Al Alam, other Iranian TVs taken off Western sats

Al Alam, other Iranian TVs taken off Western sats
Mon Jul 1, 2013 10:49:33

A number of Western satellite firms have, in their campaign against alternative voices and freedom of speech, pulled the plug on several Iranian television channels.

On Monday, the Intel Sat company became the latest service provider to take Iranian channels including Al Alam off the air.

This comes as Eutelsat 8 and Galaxy 19 as well as HotBird 13B have also stopped broadcasting Al Alam.

Meanwhile, satellite companies Hotbird 13-B, Eutelsat 25-C, Eutelsat 21-B, Eutelsat 8-West-A, Intelsat 20, Galaxy 19, and Optus D-2 also removed the Islamic Republic of Iran’s English news channel Press TV.

Iran’s Spanish-language channel Hispan TV was also removed from satellites Eutelsat 8-West-A, Eutelsat 7-West-A, and Intelsat 21.

Iran's general entertainment television network iFilm -- which broadcasts in both English and Arabic --was also taken off the air by Eutelsat 21-B, Eutelsat 25-C, Hotbird 13-B, Eutelsat 7-West-A, Intelsat 20, and Optus D-2.

Broadcasting of another Iranian channel, called al-Kawthar, was stopped by Eutelsat 8-West-A, Eutelsat 7-West-A, and Galaxy 19.

On Sunday, the International Telecommunications Satellite Organization (ITSO) called on the United States and Intelsat to suspend their decision on taking Iranian channels off the air.

José Manuel Do Rosario Toscano, the director general of ITSO, which oversees Intelsat's global services, asked both Intelsat and the US to hold talks with Iran on the issue.

On June 19, Intelsat told Iran's national broadcasting corporation, Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB), that it will no longer provide services to Iranian channels as of July 1 because of US sanctions.

Iranian satellite channels have come under a wave of attacks by European governments and satellite companies since January 2012, and have been taken off the air in several Western countries, including Britain, France, Germany and Spain.

Now Al Alam viewers can continue to watch the Arabic news channel live on its website and on some Internet platforms including livestation, YoutubeDailymotion, and other social networking websites.

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