Benjamin Netenyahu has threatened to shutdown the Israeli national broadcaster if it does not pay the 12 million Euro Guarantee.
Haaretz is reporting that the Israeli Prime Minister has threatened the national broadcaster with closure if it does not pay the 12 million Euro guarantee required by the EBU. Senior officials at the Ministry of Finance have stated that the Israeli Prime Minister will pass a law shutting down the broadcaster should KAN not provide the required funds for the guarantee.
The threat is part of an escalating argument between the Israeli national broadcaster and the Ministry of Finance over who should pay the guarantee required by the EBU. KAN argues that the Israeli state should pay for the guarantee as financing the 12 million Euro guarantee would require the firing of 200 members of staff and the axing of a number of productions. While the Ministry of Finance states that KAN as the broadcaster should be the ones financing the guarantee.
Haaretz reports that KAN is not willing to take out a loan to pay for the guarantee should the contest have to be taken away from Israel closer to May 2019. The media outlet states that in the event of a war in the region or another event, the broadcaster would be heavily in debt and susceptible to political interference.
Should a bill to shutdown the broadcaster be introduced it is reported that the bill is unlikely to pass. The Attorney General has previously ruled against the Israeli Prime Minister during his previous attempts to restrict the way in which the national broadcaster operates, as well as close it down before it began broadcasting.
KAN has until tomorrow to provide the 12 million Euro guarantee to enable the Eurovision Song Contest 2019 to take place in Israel.