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Homechevron_rightMiddle Eastchevron_right'Terror channel' Al...

'Terror channel' Al Jazeera will no longer broadcast from Israel: Netanyahu

Terror channel Al Jazeera will no longer broadcast from Israel: Netanyahu

As tensions escalate in the Middle East, Israel's parliament has passed a controversial bill to ban Qatar-based Al Jazeera and other international news outlets, deeming them a threat to national security.

The legislation comes amid escalating hostilities between Israel and Al Jazeera, with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowing to take action to shut down the network's operations within the country.

On Monday, the Knesset, the legislature of Israel, passed legislation allowing the government to shut down foreign news networks.

Netanyahu, on his official handle, wrote, “The terror channel Al Jazeera will no longer broadcast from Israel.”

“I intend to act immediately in accordance with the new law to stop the channel’s activity,” he added.

The bill, approved in its final reading on Monday, grants senior ministers the authority to close foreign news networks, with Netanyahu confirming the decision on social media. In a post on X, he declared that Al Jazeera would no longer be broadcast in Israel and pledged immediate action under the new law.

Telecommunications minister Shlomo Karhi announced that the closure of Al Jazeera was imminent, accusing the network of encouraging hostilities against Israel. Al Jazeera, known for its critical coverage of Israel's military operations in Gaza, condemned Netanyahu's remarks as "a dangerous and ridiculous lie," vowing to persist in its reporting with "boldness and professionalism."

The move has drawn international concern, with White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre expressing alarm over the potential ban. "We believe in the freedom of the press," she told reporters, emphasizing the importance of journalists' work, especially in conflict zones like Gaza.

This isn't the first time Israel has targeted Al Jazeera. In 2017, the government vowed to expel its journalists, shut down its offices, and prevent its broadcasting, accusing the network of fostering violence. And in 2022, tragedy struck when Al Jazeera correspondent Shireen Abu Akleh was killed by Israeli forces while reporting in the occupied West Bank.

Al Jazeera's reporting has frequently drawn Israeli ire, with the network's coverage of the conflict in Gaza particularly contentious. In January, two of its journalists, Hamza Dahdouh and Mustafa Thuria, were killed while on assignment in Gaza. According to Reporters Without Borders, 103 Palestinian journalists have been killed by the Israel Defense Forces since the conflict erupted.

The legislation allowing for the closure of foreign media outlets reflects Israel's longstanding struggle with Al Jazeera's coverage, particularly during times of conflict. Critics argue that such measures stifle press freedom and limit access to information, while supporters maintain they are necessary to protect national security.

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TAGS:HamasAl JazeeraFree PalestineIsrael Palestine ConflictIsrael War on Gaza
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