Johann Hari

The Orwell Prize Council has delayed announcing its decision on Johann Hari's prize

The Orwell Prize Council has "reluctantly consented" to delay announcing its decision on Independent columnist Johann Hari's 2008 prize.

On 30 June the council confirmed an investigation had begun into Hari's previous win after he admitted to having used unattributed quotes in several of his articles.

He was suspended by the Independent for two months while an internal investigation was to be carried out.

At the time Hari denied his actions amounted to plagiarism. He has also faced further accusations of potentially being linked to the editing of Wikipedia pages of other reporters.

In a statement today the Orwell Prize Council said it had reached a "clear and unanimous decision" when it met on 21 July to consider his 2008 submission.

However today (25 July) the council refused to reveal that decision following a request from the Independent for further representations by Hari to be considered.

In making its decision the Council said it had already considered a representation by Hari and that "appropriate weight was placed upon it".

"The Council of the Orwell Prize is fully satisfied that it has adopted the appropriate procedure for an exercise of this kind."

However it has "reluctantly consented" to delaying its announcement while the Independent carries out its own investigation.

According to the council Hari is not permitted to make any further representations while the Independent's investigation is conducted.

"We will take no further action and make no further statements until that time," the statement adds.

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