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Reporter sacked after he was hit by rapper

The Austrian Broadcasting Authority the ORF has caved in to fans of a German rapper who they sacked for hitting a reporter - and have allowed him to take his place back on a casting show - and fired the reporter.

Sido, alias Paul Hartmut Würdig, will now be allowed to return as a juror on the X-factor-style talent shown "Die große Chance" shown on Austrian TV.

But the reporter he hit, TV show host Dominic Heinzl, has been told he will not have his contract renewed at the end of the year for "cost reasons".

The ORF said it was looking to save money and denied the decision to axe TV show host Heinzl was anything to do with the fight.

German rapper Sido, whose name is a shortening of the phrase Super Intelligent Drug Addict (super-intelligentes Drogenopfer), hit Heinzl and then proceeded to swear at him, bizarrely telling him it was a good thing his mother was dead as she was a prostitute. It is not the first scandal involving the rapper, who was fined 14,000 Euros for throwing a stone at a disabled woman in August 2007.

Sido later apologised for the verbal assault on the journalist's mother - but not for the punch, and fans started an online campaign for him to be reinstated on the show - saying the reporter had thrown himself on the ground and pretended to have been hurt.

They even staged a flashmob where people feigned being punched and threw themselves to the ground - and coined a new phrase for it - Heinzeling.

Sido was replaced on the show - for one week - by a popular Austrian actor who plays the assistant to a spoof Habsburg Emperor - but now he will vacate the post again and Sido will return.

ORF TV boss Kathrin Zechner said: "It is not a U-turn - the stop was necessary because both sides had stepped over the boundaries. But I believe in reconciliation and I spoke to both men, in which they showed regret for their actions, and therefore we can go back to the start, and show that when a row comes to an end there should be reconciliation."

Heinzl's show Chilli will continue until the end of the year and he will then have to look to find a new job. His old job at ATV is not an option, Sasa Schwarzjirg and Claudia are doing well as the broadcaster's new society reporters and he is not wanted.

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