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Brian Williams quits NBC Nightly News for several days after false Iraq story

NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams says he is taking himself off air “for several days”, amid questions over false claims he came under fire in Iraq.

Brian Williams said it had become “painfully apparent” that he was too much a part of the news.

The anchor repeatedly told a story about being shot down in a chopper in Iraq but veterans disputed his account.

Brian Williams, the most-watched network anchor in the US, blamed the “fog of memory” for the lapse.

He said he would not be presenting his nightly NBC show for several days while the network investigated his claims.Brian Williams quits NBC

“Upon my return, I will continue my career-long effort to be worthy of the trust of those who place their trust in us,” Brian Williams said in a statement.

On February 4, Brian Williams made an apology on air over his Iraq story.

“I made a mistake in recalling the events of 12 years ago,” he said.

“I want to apologize. I said I was travelling in an aircraft that was hit by RPG [rocket-propelled grenade] fire. I was instead in a following aircraft.”

Brian Williams’ apology came after veterans who were on the helicopter that was hit challenged his version of events.

One of them, Flight engineer Lance Reynolds, wrote: “Sorry dude, I don’t remember you being on my aircraft. I do remember you walking up about an hour after we had landed to ask me what had happened.”

Questions have also been raised about Brian Williams’ coverage of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, with one health official challenging a claim he contracted dysentery reporting on the event.

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