Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu designated the television channel run by Hamas a “terrorist organization” on Wednesday, claiming that it is used to recruit militants.
Netanyahu, who is also defense minister, “signed an order declaring the Hamas Al-Aqsa television channel to be a terrorist organization,” the premier’s office said.
It said the decision was made on the advice of the Israeli security services, which were said to have discovered the Palestinian Islamist movement’s “use of the Al-Aqsa satellite channel to recruit militants to its ranks.”
Israel, the United States, European Union and other powers consider Hamas a terrorist organization.
Hamas, which does not recognize the Jewish state, took power in the Gaza Strip in 2007, and the enclave has been subjected to a strict Israeli blockade for more than a decade.
Israel has fought three wars with Hamas and its allies since 2008. A tense ceasefire is currently in place.
– with reporting by Agence France-Presse