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Netanyahu demands closure of Al-Jazeera’s Jerusalem office

Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, demanded that the Jerusalem office of Qatari news agency Al-Jazeera be closed, accusing it of inciting recent violence over a Jerusalem holy site.

“The Al-Jazeera network continues to incite violence around the Temple Mount. I have appealed several times to law enforcement authorities demanding the closure of the Al-Jazeera Jerusalem office,” Netanyahu said on Facebook.

“If this does not happen because of legal interpretation, I will work to legislate the required laws in order to remove Al-Jazeera from Israel,” Netanyahu added.

The Al-Jazeera Jerusalem office was not immediately available for comment.

Al-Jazeera, a main conduit for news from Israel to the Arab and Muslim world, extensively covered recent tensions in Jerusalem over Israeli security measures at the al-Aqsa Mosque compound, known to Jews as the Temple Mount.

Israel on Thursday removed the last remaining security installations it had put in place at the holy site after a deadly attack sparked Palestinian protests.

Also, Jerusalem’s Muslim leaders told worshippers that they can end their protest, apparently ending the stand-off.

The network has been banned in several countries – including Egypt, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Syria – and has been accused of harbouring biases towards Islamist organisations.

Al-Jazeera has been repeatedly accused of bias by Israeli authorities, and in June, Netanyahu met with top security and intelligence officials to discuss potentially shutting down the news bureau.

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