Joining Arab States, Israel Says It Plans to Ban Al-Jazeera

Joining Arab States, Israel Says It Plans to Ban Al-Jazeera

The minister said that both Arabic and English-language channels of Al Jazeera would be banned.

Al Jazeera has already been targeted by Arab nations that are isolating Qatar as part of a dispute over Doha's politics and alleged support for extremists.

Kara said the measures were meant to bolster Israel's security and "to bring a situation that channels based in Israel will report objectively".

"Lately, nearly all countries in our region determined that Al Jazeera supports terrorism, supports religious radicalization", Mr Kara said.

That includes Al Jazeera's reporting of the recent protests over the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.

"Al-Jazeera is surprised by the announcement of the Israeli minister of communications in his justification that the decision is consistent with what has been done by Arab countries. namely Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain, Egypt", the Al-Jazeera official said in Doha.




Israeli officials have long accused Al Jazeera of bias against the Jewish state. "Israel should abandon these undemocratic plans and allow Al-Jazeera and all journalists to report freely from the country and areas it occupies".

"Al Jazeera stresses that it will closely watch the developments that may result from the Israeli decision, and will take the necessary legal measures towards it", it said in a statement.

"The Al-Jazeera channel continues to incite violence around the Temple Mount", Netanyahu wrote in a Facebook post on July 27, referring to the religious site in Jerusalem that is holy to both Muslims and Jews. Communications Minister Ayoob Kara said on Sunday that his office has formally proposed the shutdown, suggesting that it could help Israel improve relations with Gulf nations that have taken similar action.

The news organisation said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been threatening to close its operations in the country, accusing it of inciting violence against Israel. He said "Therefore, I have contacted the security echelon and have requested a professional opinion regarding the Al-Jazeera network".

The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, also known as Adalah, also challenged the plan, saying that it would be subject to scrutiny before the Supreme Court, adding that "it would fail the test of legality".

"Al-Jazeera had a big role conveying the Palestinian narrative with a high professionalism", said Hazem Qassem, a Hamas spokesman.

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