A UK TV channel has been handed a £75,000 penalty for broadcasting antisemitic content.
Ofcom, the broadcasting regulator, imposed the fine on Mohiuddin Digital Television Limited, which operates Noor TV, an Urdu-language channel operating in the UK.
In November 2015, the channel ran a programme during which one scholar, Allama Mufti Muhammad Saeed Sialvi Sahib, stated that the prophet Mohammed had told his followers, “whoever amongst you comes across a Jew, they should slay him immediately.” Allama Sialvi subsequently said that when a follower of the Prophet heard this, he immediately went and killed a Jewish trader with whom he’d had a long-standing business relationship.
As described in the Ofcom ruling, Allama Sialvi “held this to be an example of the devotion and obedience of a disciple to the prophet Muhammed and on several occasions appeared to condone the killing of a Jewish trader.” The ruling went on to state that the Muslim scholar “held up in unequivocal terms the killing of a Jewish person as an example of devotion and obedience within the context of the Islamic faith.”
The Ofcom document also said that Noor TV had replied by saying the station “fully acknowledged the breach for which we voluntarily apologised on air” and stated that it understood Ofcom’s reasoning for proposing a financial penalty.
This is not the first time that Ofcom has fined Noor TV for content it has screened. In 2013 the channel was fined £85,000 after a presenter said it was a duty for Muslims to murder anyone who insulted the prophet Mohammed.