Israel Set to Shut Down Al Jazeera Operations, Confiscate Equipments

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced the government’s decision to close the Qatar-based news outlet Al Jazeera within Israel, citing long-standing disputes and national security concerns.

The announcement came shortly after the Israeli parliament passed a national security law that empowers the government to cease operations of foreign media outlets deemed a threat.

Communications Minister Shlomo Karhi reinforced the decision, stating that Al Jazeera, which he referred to as an “incitement channel,” would no longer be allowed to operate, and that their broadcasting equipment would be seized. This includes cameras, servers, and other communication devices.

This move has sparked criticism, particularly from Walid Al-Omari, the head of Al Jazeera’s operations in Israel and the Palestinian territories. Al-Omari criticized the decision as politically motivated by Israel’s right-wing factions. He noted that while the closure affects operations within Israel, it does not impact Al Jazeera’s activities in the West Bank or Gaza Strip, areas where Al Jazeera continues to broadcast.

The closure comes amid escalating tensions following the October 7 attack by Hamas on Israel, which resulted in significant casualties and has been described by Netanyahu’s government as a justification for the stringent media clampdown. Al Jazeera has repeatedly denied accusations from the Israeli government of bias and insists on the neutrality of its journalism—even as Israel alleges that some of the network’s journalists are affiliated with Hamas.


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