Jordanian TV Station Denies German Broadcaster's Antisemitism Accusations

International German broadcaster Deutsche Welle suspended its partnership with Amman-based Roya TV over what it called antisemitic and anti-Israel content

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A Jordanian broadcaster on Monday rejected accusations of publishing antisemitic content that led a German broadcaster to suspend a decade-long cooperation agreement.

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Amman-based Roya TV said in a statement that it “regrets the declared decision” of international German broadcaster Deutsche Welle to suspend the partnership. It added the Arab media group was the target of “a hostile campaign" from parties it did not name.

A satirical segment on Roya TV on Israeli-Jordanian water deal.

On Sunday, Deutsche Welle said anti-Israeli and antisemitic content and caricatures distributed by the popular Jordanian channel's social media platforms were “definitely not consistent with the values of DW,” forcing the German company “to re-evaluate the cooperation.”

A caricature depicting Arthur Balfour and a Jew holding a sign reading 'Palestine.'

“We are truly sorry that we did not notice these disgusting images," said Guido Baumhauer, a senior executive with Deutsche Welle.

In Monday's statement, Fares Sayegh, Roya's chief executive, stressed that the “criticism of illegal, inhumane or racist actions by Israel as a state” should be differentiated from antisemitism.

The German public broadcaster’s partnership arrangements involve Deutsche Welle supplying journalistic content. Sayegh said his channel had “a successful professional relationship” with Deutsche Welle.

Israel and Jordan made peace in 1994 and have close security ties, but the agreement is unpopular among Jordanians. Moreover, diplomatic relations have been strained in recent years over tensions at the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem, and Israel’s expansion of Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank.

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