RAMALLAH, June 25, 2016 (WAFA) – Secretary General of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), Saeb Erekat, Saturday, denounced the Israeli Security Minister’s decision to shut down the Palestinian Authority-funded Musawa television channel, which operates within Israel, for six months.
According to the Palestinian Information Center, ‘Israeli Security Minister Gilad Erdan on Thursday signed an order to shut down the Palestinian Authority-funded Musawa television channel for six months.’ The Israeli minister, according to media outlets, claimed the channel represents an affront to Israel’s sovereignty.
It said, Erdan decided to shut down the Israel-based channel, after learning it subsequently changed its name to the Musawa Channel on behalf of the banned Palestine 48 channel.
The Musawa Channel’s content is produced in Nazareth, in northern Israel, and sent to the West Bank city of Ramallah for editing, in an arrangement, according to Erdan, which has not been authorized. The Palestinian Authority sponsors the TV channel, Noted the center.
“I will not allow any harm to come to Israel’s sovereignty or give a foothold to the PA within the country; [Israel],” said Erdan.
Last year, Riad Hassan, the head of the Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation, called the decision to close down Palestine 48 “illegal.”
According to the Times of Israel, Hassan said the station’s goal was “to give a stage to the Arabs of ’48 so that they can expose to the Arab world everything they must go through, regarding their social, cultural and economic difficulties.” Hassan stated that while the Palestinian Authority intended to support the station, the channel “has no intention of violating Israel’s rule of law.”
Hassan said that talk of establishing the channel began more than a year earlier and that the plan received the blessing of Arab members of Knesset, writers and media personalities.
The station aims to focus its broadcasts on the lives of Arabs living inside Israel proper and would offer content produced in the Galilee, the Negev and the Triangle, an area in northern Israel home to a sizable Arab population.
The Israeli Daily quoted Sanaa Hamud, a member of a panel that counsels the channel, as saying the establishment of the station was a watershed moment in the history of Israel’s Arab population.
PLO Erekat called upon the world countries and international human rights and press organizations, including international and Arab Journalists s to monitor Israeli violations of international and humanitarian laws which ensured freedom of opinion and expression.
He urged to hold Israel accountable for its infringement of Palestinians’ rights and freedoms.