Al-Manar TV has Australia mulling broadcasting changes

SYDNEY, Australia (JTA) — Australia’s media regulator is proposing to prohibit content that advocates terror after an investigation found that a radical Islamic TV station breached the broadcasting standards code.

The Australian Communications and Media Authority said in its report Dec. 9 that Hezbollah’s Al-Manar Television, which is banned in the United States, that two programs breached Australian standards.

One was the current affairs show "With the Event," which the report said “was likely to gratuitously vilify a group on the basis of ethnicity and religion.” The other show noted was "With the Viewers."

The executive director of the Executive Council of Australian Jewry, Peter Wertheim, cautiously welcomed the report, but urged the Australian government to formally request that the Indonesian government stop further Indosat transmissions of Al-Manar programming into Australia.

The Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council concurred.

“Anti-Jewish hatred on Al-Manar has long been a feature of the station,” said its executive director, Dr. Colin Rubenstein. “Al-Manar’s raison d’etre is to radicalize Muslims around the world, including in Australia, to support Hezbollah’s terrorist methods and goals. AIJAC believes any media organization owned and/or operated by any banned terrorist organization should also be banned in Australia.”

The Arabic-language station has twice been banned in Australia, but was cleared in 2009.

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