Intelsat in U.S. & Canada Removes Iranian Channel PressTV
Pro-Israel media activist group HonestReporting Canada welcomed news on Saturday that global satellite communication provider Intelsat had removed Iran’s state-funded propaganda mouthpiece PressTV from its broadcast platform in Canada and the United States.
The NGO expressed its concern, however, that PressTV is still accessible over Intelsat's Galaxy 19 platform.
HonestReporting Canada Executive Director Mike Fegelman issued the following statement:
“Intelsat’s move falls directly in line with other important domestic and international efforts to sanction, isolate, and impede the Iranian regime’s efforts in procuring nuclear weaponry. While this move marks an important step in the right direction, that PressTV is now claiming its accessible at a new frequency over Intelsat’s Galaxy 19 platform is disconcerting.
"This past week, the U.S. Treasury Department blacklisted Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) and its director, Ezatollah Zarghami, which oversees Iran’s broadcast channel. In October, Intelsat blocked Iran’s official broadcast channels in Europe, specifically IRIB, and at the time would not confirm or deny that it did so at the request of U.S. government officials.
"As serial human rights abusers, state sponsors of terror, and a nation with alarming atomic ambitions, the Iranian regime’s propaganda tool should not be conferred with credibility, met with cooperation, and abetted by disseminating its messaging.
"Press TV has a long history of promoting Holocaust denial, giving platforms to neo-Nazis, and perpetuating a radical anti-Israel, anti-Semitic, and anti-western agenda. Its 'reports' and 'reporters' distort the truth and manipulate the news all while the Iranian regime stifles free speech and imprisons journalists. That PressTV claims Intelsat’s decision was tantamount to a 'flagrant violation of free speech' is all the more laughable.
"The Islamic Republic’s propaganda arm deserves to be relegated to the fringes. Intelsat’s action to take PressTV off the airwaves is reflective of principled decision making, but the satellite provider must take immediate measures to prevent PressTV from broadcasting over its Galaxy 19 platform.”