Israeli TV station agrees to financial rescue deal

AP News
Posted: Dec 02, 2012 11:58 AM

JERUSALEM (AP) — The owner of an Israeli TV station facing crippling debts says he has agreed to government terms to keep it on the air.

Executives from Channel 10, known for its aggressive investigative reporting, have charged that the government hindered the channel's rescue, hoping to eliminate a source of criticism. That was before Sunday's agreement.

David Vaaknin, a spokesman for the station, confirmed the accord was reached.

The owner, U.S. billionaire Ron Lauder, accepted the terms that would defer the station's debt, agreeing to invest millions of shekels (dollars) in the station and post guarantees until its broadcasting license is renewed.

The channel is not yet in the clear. The government must sign the deal and pass a law by Dec. 31 extending the station's franchise, and those are not certainties.