The Moreshet (Heritage) television channel (Channel 20) has been fined 108,500 shekels ($28,000) for broadcasting a rally held by right-wing supporters two days ahead of the recent Israeli elections, in violation of its licencing terms, according to a report by the Walla! website.
The “National Camp” rally was held in Rabin Square under the slogan “United for the Land of Israel,” and was attended by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Channel 20, which is associated with the right wing of the political map, broadcast the rally live, including interviews with politicians. This allegedly violated the terms of its permit, which called for obtaining permission in writing ahead of a news-related event close to the end of election campaigns.
The Council for Cable TV and Satellite Broadcasting opened legal proceedings against the channel, saying that the rally constituted a news item, according to the Walla! report. Council head Dr. Yifat Ben-Hai-Segev said that such a broadcast required obtaining prior permission. “The channel had approached the council two months earlier with a request to start broadcasting news, but up to now has not yet fulfilled the requirements related to the business permit and other conditions. If they meet the criteria their request will be dealt with,” she said.
The channel is trying to establish an independent news company.