20th October 2012
Restore Press TV Broadcasts in Europe
Universal Justice Network and Citizens International strongly protest the unilateral stopping of broadcasts of the prestigious Press TV and several other Iranian satellite channels in Europe by the service providers, Eutelsat SA and Arqiva. The reasons given for terminating the broadcasts are duplicitous and contradictory.
The service providers said that they were following an order by the European Commission and the French broadcasting authority the Conseil Superieur de l’Audiovisuel but the European Union denied their claim.
Maya Kosyanchich, spokeswoman for the EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, told Press TV: “I have to tell you that this is a decision of Eutelsat and Arqiva and you have to ask them. It is their decision.”
The French media regulation authority has not replied to a request by Press TV for their comments on the claim by the service providers. It is disgraceful on its part not to provide an immediate response to Press TV’s query. Its reluctance only suggests an improper motive for the termination of Press TV broadcasts.
The termination of the Press TV broadcasts is a violation of the viewers’ right to freedom of thought and speech which requires access to different views and perspectives. Manipulation of people’s thoughts and opinion by denying access to alternative competing views is the mark of a dictatorship and not a democracy.
The termination of Press TV’s broadcasts also breaches France’s 1986 broadcasting law which requires that broadcasters must “supply a wide range and diversity of programmes, covering the areas of news, culture, knowledge, environment and sports. They must contribute to the democratic debate within French society…”
We urge the EU and the French authorities to take immediate action to restore the broadcasts by Press TV and the other Iranian channels in Europe.
Mohideen Abdul Kader
Universal Justice Network
No.10, Jalan Mesjid Negeri, 11600 Penang Malaysia
Tel: 00-604-8284648 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org