Israel’s Diplomatic-Security Cabinet approved emergency action against the Lebanese Hezbollah-afillaited Al-Mayaden‘s activities in Israel on Sunday night, Communications Minister Shlomo Karhi and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant announced on Monday.
According to the emergency regulations approved by the government, foreign media can be shut down in Israel with the approval of the defense minister and the cabinet if it is seen as damaging national security.
With the cabinet’s approval, Karhi can now order the closure of the channel’s offices in Israel and the confiscation of its equipment.
“Israel is at war,” said Karhi. “On land, in the air, at sea, on the electromagnetic spectrum, and in consciousness. Broadcasts like those that are identified with the enemy while damaging Israel’s security are fated to be blocked.
“Al-Mayaden’s broadcasts and reporters serve the hateful terrorist organizations, and it is time to bring them to justice.”
“The State of Israel will not allow Al-Mayaden’s dangerous propaganda which tries, during a war, to harm the security interests of Israel and serve the enemies’ objectives,” said Gallant.
“The steps being taken against the Al-Mayaden ‘media network’, which has basically become Hezbollah’s mouthpiece, are the right thing to do in the face of terrorist supporters who think themselves reporters.”
In accordance with the emergency regulations approved by the government, the Israeli political and security cabinet agreed to take measures against #AlMayadeen Media Network.As per the emergency regulations, the Minister of Communications has the right to order the closure of… pic.twitter.com/iKmTCODmp7
— Al Mayadeen English (@MayadeenEnglish) November 13, 2023
Al Jazeera shutdown back on the government’s agenda?
Karhi also expressed in recent weeks that he wanted to shut down Qatari channel Al-Jazeera‘s Israel activities for similar reasons, but the cabinet decision made on Sunday only referred to Al-Mayaden.
Meanwhile, while multiple officials have confirmed that Al-Jazeera’s reporting could potentially endanger IDF soldiers, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was reported to be preventing the issue from being voted on in cabinet meetings.
Karhi, however, claimed that the delay was because of Gallant who hadn’t given his approval to act against Al-Jazeera. Gallant later denied the accusation saying he fully supported limiting Al-Jazeera’s activities in Israel.