June 24, 2010 - 12:00am

The Hamas-run al-Aqsa TV station in Gaza announced that its broadcast through the French-based satellite provider Eutelsat will be forced stop within six hours.

"Talks with the French government to call off the ban decision have failed and the order will come into force tonight at 8:00 p.m. local time (1700 GMT)," a press release by the TV station said.

France ordered last week that the al-Aqsa Channel not be broadcast through Eutelsat, claiming that the TV incites hatred and violence against Jews and Israel.

According to the press release, the ban will cost the Channel lost of 70 percent of its viewers across the world.

The station also said that it would continue broadcasting on the Arabsat satellite, adding "efforts are being made to find another satellite regulator in the Arab world."

Hamas is listed by the West as a terror group for adopting violence and killing tens of Israelis in suicide bombing attacks.

The Islamic movement won the legislative elections in 2006 and seized the Gaza Strip violently the following year.

France claims the channel shows programs and cartoons and interview Hamas leaders who glorify the killing of Israelis by Palestinians.

However, channel officials say they do not provoke against Israel, adding these shows "glorify the Palestinian struggle against the occupiers."

Al-Aqsa, which started to be on air in 2006, broadcasts on Eutelsat throughout an agreement with the Bahrain-based Noorsat regulator.

Together with al-Aqsa TV, Hamas owns a radio station, a magazine, two newspapers and a film production company.


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