Rob Ford has apologized to Toronto Star reporter Daniel Dale and claimed he did not mean to suggest the journalist was a pedophile during a televised interview with Conrad Black.
But Dale said Tuesday afternoon that the apology did not go far enough.
The reporter served Ford with a libel notice last week, demanding the mayor apologize and retract what he called a "false insinuation."
During his interview with Black, Ford claimed that the reporter was in his backyard in May 2012, "taking pictures of little kids," and Ford added he didn't want to say "that word, but you start thinking what this guy is all about."
Ford later told reporters he stood by every word he said in the interview.
But in a statement to council on Tuesday, Ford it is "unfortunate" that the word he never said was "ascribed" to him by the media.
"I never called Daniel Dale a pedophile. I have never used that word to describe Mr. Dale," Ford said. "I do not believe Mr. Dale is a pedophile nor did I intend to suggest that in my comments."
Ford said his comments were about the fear he had when a neighbour told him someone was lurking at his fence and "appeared" to be taking pictures of his home.
"To be clear, I never personally saw Mr. Dale peering over the fence or taking pictures. My neighbour told me, however, that he did see someone doing this," Ford said.
The mayor said he sincerely apologized if his words caused the reporter harm or personal offence.
Dale has always maintained he was writing a story about a plot of public land adjacent to Ford's house that the mayor wanted to buy, so he went to take a look when the mayor emerged from his home to confront him. The reporter has said that at no time was he on the mayor's property nor did he take any pictures.
You can hear Ford's entire apology in the audio player below.
But Dale said Tuesday afternoon that he will continue with legal action.
The reporter took to Twitter with a series of tweets explaining his position.
I asked Mayor Ford to 1) retract all of his false claims about my conduct and 2) issue an unreserved, abject, complete apology.— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) December 17, 2013
His statement today didn't come close. I'm proceeding with a defamation lawsuit.— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) December 17, 2013
In his "apology," the mayor didn't retract anything at all. Instead, he blamed the media for its reasonable interpretation of his words.— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) December 17, 2013
He also blamed his neighbour. He used the words "lurking" and "leering."— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) December 17, 2013
And, crucially, he didn't retract or specifically apologize for the categorically false, malicious, and in-itself-defamatory claim about— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) December 17, 2013
me taking pictures of his young kids.— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) December 17, 2013
I didn't ask for an "I apologize if." I asked for an "I apologize because I said false, damaging, and unfounded things, and here they are."— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) December 17, 2013
So: while I appreciate the mayor's first step, no dad or teacher would accept that apology as sufficient. I would appreciate another try.— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) December 17, 2013
Media people: I'll speak to you soon, today. Give me a few minutes and I'll get back to you all separately.— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) December 17, 2013
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