NTC appeals to Nilesat to end Gaddafi TV propaganda

Rebecca Hawkes | 08-05-2011

Propaganda broadcasts from the Gaddafi regime stand accused of inciting “hate and violence” by Libya’s National Transitional Council (NTC), which has requested that Egyptian satellite operator Nilesat take the TV channels off the air.

Abdel Hafiz Ghoga, vice-chairman of the Benghazi-based NTC, told AFP that the regime had "without a doubt used media as a weapon, as a bullet" to spread its propaganda, while lawyer Issam Al Mawy claims Gaddafi has exploited the channels to even transmit military codes.

Al Mawy is one of six lawyers within Libya now seeking to force an end to the transmission of news bulletins from the Gaddafi-controlled Libyan Jamahiriya Broadcasting and is, according to the press agency, hoping to reach a diplomatic solution with Nilesat.

So far, Nilesat has refused to comply with the request as Egypt does not recognize NTC as the legitimate government of Libya - France, Gambia, Italy and Qatar are currently the only nations to do so.

However, if Nilesat continues to refuse the NTC’s request, Al Mawy reportedly says he and his colleagues will partner with Egyptian “counterparts” to mount a legal challenge against Nilesat from within Egypt.

"Nilesat has to take responsibility morally and legally," Al Mawy told AFP. He claims that by labeling the rebels ‘terrorists’, with links to Al Qaeda, the broadcasts have helped split Libya in two.

The only comment Nilesat chief engineer Salah Hamza provided AFP is that the satellite operator’s "code of conduct is to respect the contract.”.