Rupert Murdoch
Rupert Murdoch speaking at the Leveson Inquiry at the High Court in London.

Former prime minister Gordon Brown declared war on News Corp, its octagenarian boss Rupert Murdoch told the Leveson Inquiry.

Murdoch claimed that Brown once threatened in a phone call to "wage war" on News Corp. He said Brown was not in a "very balanced state of mind" when he made the phone call.

"Well, your company has declared war on my government and we have no alternative but to make war on your company," said Brown over the phone, revealed Murdoch at the Leveson Inquiry.

According to Murdoch, the phone conversation took place in 2009, at a time when the Sun newspaper started showing more allegiance to the Conservative side.

Brown, in a statement later in the day, rubbished the allegation as "wholly wrong".

He denied any instance of phone call, meeting, or written communication to Murdoch about the Sun's position.

"The only phone call I had with Mr Murdoch in the last year of my time in office was a phone call specifically about Afghanistan and his newspaper's coverage of the war," said Brown.
"I hope Mr Murdoch will have the good grace to correct his account," he added.

Though the media mogul stated during his appearance before the inquiry that he did not know many politicians, his comments on former prime ministers indicate the kind of political influence his organisation enjoyed during their time in the office.

In his evidence to the Leveson Inquiry, Murdoch revealed that he had met Tony Blair several times when he was the prime minister and had good friendship with him.

"I want to say that I, in 10 years of his power, never asked Mr Blair for anything. Nor indeed did I receive any favours. If you want to check that, I think you should call him," he told the inquiry.

Murdoch also told the inquiry that he did not seek any help from Margaret Thatcher and did not receive any.

He disclosed that he never discussed News Corp's 61 per cent bid for BSkyB with David Cameron.

Murdoch's witness statement before the inquiry will continue for the second day on Thursday.