A senior Israeli-based Al Jazeera journalist is facing the loss of his state-issued press pass after he declared that used his work as a reported to further the Arab ‘resistance’ against the Jewish state.
Forty-year-old Elias Karam, a resident of the northern town of Nazareth, lost his press credentials last Wednesday, following an order by Communications Minister Ayoub Kara (Likud) to shut down Al Jazeera’s operations in Israel, due to the Qatar-based media outlet’s history of anti-Israel incitement.
Government Press Organization manager Nitzan Hen revoked Karam’s press pass after the GPO reviewed a May 2016 interview Karam gave to the Islamist Dar Al-Iman outlet.
During the interview, Karam declared himself a “Palestinian journalist”, despite his Israeli citizenship, and said that his work at Al Jazeera is “an integral part of the resistance” against Israel.
Following the GPO’s initial decision to revoke Karam’s press credentials, Karam appealed the move, prompting Hen to hold a hearing on the matter Monday.
During the hearing, Yediot Ahronot reported, Karam acknowledged that he still views his work as an act of “resistance”, but emphasized that he does not condone violence. Karam requested the GPO reinstate his press credentials, saying their loss made it difficult for him to continue his work as a reporter.
Earlier this month, Israel’s Communications Ministry announced that the Al Jazeera media outlet would soon be banned from both operating and broadcasting its television programming in the Jewish state.
“Recently, we’ve noticed that some outlets are not being used for free expression,” said Communications Minister Ayoub Kara, “but for incitement against Israeli citizens. One of these outlets, the Al Jazeera network, is responsible for the loss of some of our finest sons,” Kara continued, referencing anti-Israel incitement ahead of the July 14th terror attack which left two Israeli Border Police officers dead.