Israeli pubcaster Kan avoids imminent closure as gov’t focuses on judicial reform


The immediate future of Tehran broadcaster Kan appears to be more secure after the Israeli government said the proposed shuttering of the country’s public broadcaster would be postponed.

Kan, which was launched in 2017 after replacing Channel 1, appeared to be facing imminent closure after communications minister Shalom Karhi said last month that there was “no place for public broadcasting” in the country.

In a January interview with Israel’s Channel 12, he said that he would cut “hundred of millions” of shekels from the pubcaster’s budget as part of a strategy to “remove obstacles and remove regulation” to open up competition.

Karhi took up his position following prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s win in Israel’s latest general election late last year.

However, his government is now refocusing on pushing through controversial judiciary reforms, which have resulted in public protests, with all other activity paused “until further notice”.

Netanyahu was also prime minister in 2017 when his government closed down the Israel Broadcasting Authority.

He was also against the launch of Kan, which is behind almost 50% of local original programming and ordered Tehran, which was later acquired by Apple TV+ around the world.

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