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Israel closes West Bank radio station for ‘incitement’

A Palestinian journalist checks for damages after Israeli forces raided the offices of the local Palestinian Al-Khalil radio overnight in the West Bank town of Hebron on November 21, 2015
A Palestinian journalist checks for damages after Israeli forces raided the offices of the local Palestinian Al-Khalil radio overnight in the West Bank town of Hebron on November 21, 2015

Israeli forces on Wednesday raided and closed a Palestinian radio station based in the occupied West Bank on the pretext that it was “inciting violence” against Israel, according to the Israeli military.

“The Israeli army and the Shin Bet intelligence agency have closed the [Al-Sanabel] radio station, which broadcasts from the village of Dura in the West Bank city of Hebron [Al-Khalil],” the army said in a statement.

The army went on to allege that the Palestinian broadcaster had been shut down because it had “incited and supported military operations against the Israeli army”.

According to the same statement, Israeli forces seized the station’s broadcasting equipment and ordered the station closed until further notice.

Eyewitnesses told Anadolu Agency that Israeli forces had also arrested station head Ahmad Darwish, along with four other station employees.

Last November, the Israeli government vowed to shut down any media organisation found to be “broadcasting material that incites violence against Israel”. Soon after, they raided the offices of Al-Khalil radio in Hebron and handed the station a six-month order to close.

According to the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate, six Palestinian media organisations in the Israeli-occupied West Bank have been shut down this year alone on the pretext of “incitement”.

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