Australian Conservatives founder and South Australian Senator Cory Bernardi has welcomed an ABC move to drop al-Jazeera news coverage.
The Guardian reports the National Broadcaster has quietly dropped Qatar-based Al-Jazeera from its 24-hour news channel, where it has had a home overnight since 2011.
The inclusion of the international news service has been slammed for years by conservative politicians who said the ABC was airing “Islamic propaganda”.
Senator Bernardi, and Liberal senator Eric Abetz have lobbied tirelessly for the ABC to dump it and News Corp columnist Andrew Bolt is another critic.
“Our national broadcaster is adequately funded to provide news that Australians are interested in,” Bernardi said in 2013. “There’s no need for them to be channelling content that in many cases omits the significant deficiencies in the Islamic world and overlooks some of the important information in regard to terrorism.”
Al-Jazeera has not appeared on News 24 since the end of January. The ABC said it had decided to run live bulletins out of Perth as well as repeats of its own shows.
Senator Bernardi says the move is a welcome one, “Delisting Al-Jazeera as a source is a small step in the right direction,” he said, “The ABC shouldn’t be funding Islamic propaganda and the Australian people shouldn’t be funding the ABC’s almost exclusively leftist propaganda. If the ABC won’t comply with their charter obligations to be balanced then the case for radical reform of the ABC grows stronger by the day.”
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