The EU has knocked Iran’s Press TV off the air.
Three years after the Iranian regime’s English-language broadcaster, Press TV, plastered London’s buses with an advertising campaign that billed the station as “giving a voice to the voiceless,” Europe’s airwaves have been abruptly closed to its propaganda offerings. Here’s Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty:
A leading European satellite provider has taken 19 Iranian television and radio broadcasters off the air.
Satellite provider Eutelsat and media services company Arqiva said the decision has been made because of “reinforced” European Union sanctions aimed at punishing human rights abusers.
People in Iran still have access to most of the channels operated by Iranian state broadcaster IRIB, but the channels are no longer broadcast in Europe and elsewhere.
Iran’s English-language Press TV, Farsi-language channels for Iranian expatriates, and Arabic-language offerings, including the news channel Al-Alam, are among the channels cut by the Eutelsat decision.
Not suprisingly, Press TV’s own reaction to the decision was typically bombastic:
The move follows months of jamming of Iranian channels by European satellite companies. It also shows that the European Union does not respect freedom of speech, and spares no efforts to silence the voice of alternative media outlets.
Iranian news channels affected by the decision only aimed to break the West’s monopoly on news broadcast by reflecting the voice of the oppressed people to the world.
The illegal move by Eutelsat SA, therefore, is a step to mute all alternative news outlets representing the voice of the voiceless.
The banishing of Press TV from Europe’s television screens forms part of a wider sanctions package against both Iran and Syria that was implemented by the European Union today. As the Wall Street Journal points out, “The sanctions, aimed at forcing Tehran back to the negotiating table over the nuclear program, target Iranian financial institutions, trade, energy and shipping.”
Now all the EU has to do is disband itself and it might retroactively deserve the Nobel Peace prize.
Update: And who better for Press TV to turn to for reaction than antisemite Gilad Atzmon? (hat tip: Adam Holland)