Israel moves to shut down local operations of Al Jazeera

Israel moves to shut down local operations of Al Jazeera

Israel moves to shut down local operations of Al Jazeera

The television channel Al-Jazeera of Qatar denounces the israeli government's decision to close its offices and will challenge it in court, announced on Sunday a leader of the chain.

These countries have broken the 5 June with Qatar accusing it of supporting "terrorism" and require, among other things, to normalize their relations, the closure of Al-Jazeera. "When I see all of these countries working and we are standing aside, in Arabic, it is interpreted that we are on the side of terrorism - of Iran, Hezbollah and Hamas", Kara said.

Kara said cable TV providers agreed to take the network off the air but closing its Jerusalem bureau would need approval by the Knesset.

According to the outlet, Kara also revealed his plans to revoke Al Jazeera reporters' press passes.

"It is a shocking statement, and it completely undermines Israel's claims to be the only democracy in the region, because it gets to the heart of one of the most important institutions of democracy", he said to Al Jazeera.

"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 official told AFP in Doha.

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Communications Minister Ayoub Kara attends a ceremony for fallen ultra-Orthodox soldiers at a cemetery in Bnei Brak on May 1, 2017.

He accused Al-Jazeera of "inciting violence which has caused losses among the best of our sons", referring to the July 14 attack outside the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in East Jerusalem that killed two policemen.

Netanyahu congratulated Kara on twitter, writing that: "Following my instructions, he took several practical steps today to stop the actions of incitement by Al Jazeera in Israel". He said "Therefore, I have contacted the security echelon and have requested a professional opinion regarding the Al-Jazeera network".

Last month, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a Facebook post that he would work to shut the network's offices in Israel, accusing it of inciting recent violence in Jerusalem, including over an Old City site that is holy to both Muslims and Jews.

"Changing the law to shut down a media organization is a slippery slope", the group's executive secretary, Glenys Sugarman, said in a telephone interview.

Al Jazeera has also faced government censure in neighboring Egypt when, in 2014, three Al Jazeera staffers were jailed for seven years and the network's offices were closed.

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