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ATV appeals court decision to seal its headquarters
By Mohammad Ghazal - Feb 14,2013 - Last updated at Feb 14,2013
AMMAN — ATV, a Jordanian private TV station, said on Thursday it appealed to the Court of Cassation to overturn a ruling that authorised police to seal the channel’s premises recently.
“Our lawyers have appealed to the court because we believe the ruling is unfair,” ATV Spokesperson Raed Haddad told The Jordan Times, noting that the equipment “worth millions of dollars” at the station’s headquarters could be damaged if it is not constantly operated.
The closure came after Capital Bank won a lawsuit against the former owners of ATV, who owe the bank around JD12 million.
“In the appeal, we called for a committee to visit the channel’s premises and assess the possible damage to equipment if it is not run on a daily basis,” Haddad said in a phone interview.
He added that a decision is expected to be announced soon regarding the court’s ruling that sealed the channel’s headquarters.
ATV’s initial broadcast was halted on August 1, 2007 by the Audiovisual Commission over incomplete paperwork.
A week later, the launch faced a new hurdle after Jordan Radio and Television Corporation insisted that an agreement between the two establishments only covered terrestrial transmission.
Later in 2007, the ATV company, which was established by media tycoon Mohammad Elayyan, was sold for more than JD15 million to Al Ajayeb for Investments Company, owned by Mohammad Khalid Asfour and Mohammad Abdul Aati. In 2008 it was sold to the Arab Telemedia Group.
Police sealed the premises of ATV, Jordan’s first private TV station, with red wax on Thursday, according to the channel’s spokesperson.
The State Security Court prosecutor on Monday filed a petition with the Cassation Court, contesting a court ruling in June in which hard-line cleric Mahmoud Othman, known as Abu Qatada, was cleared of terrorism charges.
The State Security Court (SSC) attorney general’s office on Tuesday appealed the SSC’s acquittal of hard-line cleric Mahmoud Othman in September of terrorism charges at the Cassation Court.
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