Israel moves to shut down Al Jazeera office in Jerusalem

Israeli minister asks for closure of Al Jazeera’s offices in Jerusalem

Kara said he expects Israel's parliament, the Knesset, to consider his request in the next session.

Israel announced on Sunday its intention to close the offices of Al-Jazeera, accused by the authorities of engaging in "incitement" to violence, announced that the israeli ministry of Communications.

During a press conference, Israeli Communications Minister Ayoub Kara announced his intentions to limit Qatari-owned Al Jazeera's activity within Israel. A complete shutdown of the office would require legislation, the news agency reported. "Try the police", spokesman Daniel Bar said.

"Al Jazeera deplores this action from a state that is called the only democratic state in the Middle East and considers what it has done is risky", an unnamed official with Al Jazeera told the AFP. He claimed that the network was being used by groups to incite violence in Jerusalem.

Israel Prime Minister has threatened to close Al Jazeera over its critical coverage of Israel, particularly during the recent unrest over the restrictions on Palestinian worshippers at the al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem.

"Al Jazeera stresses that it will closely watch the developments that may result from the Israeli decision, and will take the necessary legal measures towards it. Al Jazeera will continue to cover the events of occupied Palestinian territories professionally and accurately, according to the standers set by global agencies such as the United Kingdom office of Communications".

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Al Jazeera has come under attack from several governments in the region in recent months to the concern of free press campaigners.

"We have identified media outlets that do not serve freedom of speech but endanger the security of Israel's citizens, and the main instrument has been Al Jazeera", Kara said. The move was in response to a shooting within the compound that left three Arab Israelis and two Israeli policemen dead. "And when we see that all these countries have determined as fact that Al-Jazeera is a tool of the Islamic State, Hamas, Hezbollah and Iran, and we are the only one who have not determined that, then something delusional is happening here", he said.

Kara compared the ban to moves by Saudi Arabia and other Arab Gulf countries in the wake of a diplomatic crisis with Qatar.

"Changing the law to shut down a media organization is a slippery slope", the FPA said.

The UAE and Egypt have also banned Al Jazeera.

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