By Marcus Leach

Rupert Murdoch's News Corp has withdrawn its bid for BSkyB just hours before MPs were due to pass a motion calling for him to do so.

Following the closure of News of the World amidst allegations of mass phone hacking, pressure had been mounting on Mr Murdoch to withdraw his bid for BSkyB.

"We believed that the proposed acquisition of BSkyB by News Corporation would benefit both companies, but it has become clear that it is too difficult to progress in this climate," said News Corp deputy chairman and president Chase Carey in a statement.

"News Corporation remains a committed long-term shareholder in BSkyB. We are proud of the success it has achieved and our contribution to it."

Since the phone hacking scandal was made public in recent days, and following the closure of News of the World, there has been growing public pressure for Mr Murdoch to withdraw his bid.

"Its extraordinary, its a victory for the public of this country, a victory for parliament and its a victory for the tremendous leadership Ed Miliband has shown ever since this scandal emerged over the last couple of weeks," said Shadow Culture Secretary Ivan Lewis.

"I think the two things that happened were public revolution, the news about Millie Dowler's phone, the 7/7 victims, the brave men and women who have died fighting for this country in Iraq and Afghanistan . That is tremendous revolution.

"And then Ed Miliband said 'I am a political leader. At this time responsibility must apply not only at the bottom of society but to the most powerful too, and if I am going top be consistent about that I need to show leadership on an issue of such importance to the future of our country'."

Despite the withdrawal of the bid there is still an ongoing criminal investigation into the matter, with calls for those responsible for such deeds to be brought to justice.

Mr Lewis stressed the importance of the fact that just because the bid has been withdrawn that does that signal the end of the case.

"What we mustn't allow this announcement to be today is the end of the need to get to the bottom of this unethical and criminal behaviour that has so damaged the newspaper industry, but has also undermined our democracy," Mr Lewis said.

Not only is there the humiliation of having to withdraw the bid for Mr Murdoch, but also financial implications. News Corp will now have to pay BSkyB a break fee of around £38.5 billion after walking away from the deal.

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