Australian Govermnent Supports Hezbolah - Operated TV station.
A HEZBOLLAH-AFFILIATED satellite TV station is allowed to operate in Australia despite screening racist material in breach of national broadcasting codes.
The Australia-Israel and Jewish Affairs Council has welcomed criticism of the TV station al-Manar, made last week by the Australian Communications and Media Authority.
But the council's executive director, Colin Rubenstein, urged ACMA to go further and ban the TV station, which is associated with Hezbollah, the Lebanese group proscribed as a terrorist organisation by the federal government.
"Any media organisation owned and/or operated by any banned terrorist organisation should also be banned in Australia, and the federal government should take measures to bring this about," Mr Rubenstein said, adding that "anti-Jewish hatred has long been a feature of the station".
Following an investigation into al-Manar, ACMA has proposed changes to Australia's broadcasting regulations to "prohibit content that is likely to advocate the doing of terrorist acts".
Lawyer Mark Leibler, AIJAC's national chairman, said his organisation was "concerned that ACMA apparently ignored evidence that ads of a particular charity, al-Emdad, a front for Hezbollah, breach the anti-terrorism standards".
Al-Manar, owned by Lebanese Communications group, is broadcast in Australia in Arabic from Lebanon, via an Indonesian satellite company.
AIJAC is calling on Canberra to press upon the Indonesian government "the true nature of the station, particularly the danger al-Manar poses vis-a-vis the radicalisation of Indonesian Muslims".
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