Israel's Arab minority to get TV station

AP News
Posted: May 08, 2011 11:28 AM
Israel's Arab minority to get TV station

Israel's Communications Ministry says Israel's Arab minority will soon have its own Arabic language TV station for the first time.

The ministry recently granted the station the first license for an independent Arab broadcaster. The ministry said Sunday that Hala TV will begin broadcasting in about three months.

Israel's state TV broadcasts several hours a day in Arabic, and Arabic satellite channels like Al-Jazeera are also available.

Jafar Farah of the Arab advocacy organization Mossawa Center says the decision is "an important step forward in increasing the visibility of the Arab citizens of Israel."

About 20 percent of Israel's 7 million citizens are Arabs. They are guaranteed equal rights with Jews but often suffer from discrimination.