Biden administration requests Israel reverse move to seize AP equipment

White House Press Secretary Karine Jean Pierre told reporters said that she is concerned about Israel's actions regarding the seizure, adding that it prevents journalists from doing their job. 

Published: May 21, 2024 2:52pm

The Biden administration requested that Israel reverse its decision to crack down on The Associated Press after officials seized equipment that belonged to the outlet. 

"We've been engaging directly with the government of Israel to express our concerns over this action and to ask them to reverse it," a White House spokesperson said, according to Axios. 

Israel alleged that the AP violated a recent media law by providing images to Al Jazeera, which is partially funded by the Qatari government. Al Jazeera was recently banned from reporting live from Israel, over allegations it was acting as a mouthpiece for Hamas, according to the BBC. 

“The Associated Press decries in the strongest terms the actions of the Israeli government to shut down our longstanding live feed showing a view into Gaza and seize AP equipment,” Lauren Easton, vice president of corporate communications at the AP said in a statement.

White House Press Secretary Karine Jean Pierre told reporters that the White House is concerned about Israel's actions.

According to the AP, outlet personnel received a piece of paper signed by Israel's communications minister, Shlomo Karhi, alleging they violated the country's foreign broadcaster law.  The outlet indicated it was broadcasting footage of northern Gaza prior to the exchange.

“The camera that was confiscated illegally broadcasts on the Aljazeera channel live the northern Gaza Strip, including the activities of the IDF forces and endangers our fighters,” Karhi said, according to CNN. “It should be noted that a warning was given to the AP agency already last week that according to the law and the government’s decision they are prohibited from providing broadcasts to Al Jazeera, however they decided to continue broadcasting on the channel causing a real harm to the security of the state.”

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