Middle East

After 49 years, Israel news show canceled hour before airing

With an emotional signoff, Israel's longest running TV news program has run its last episode after a sudden cancellation following a political battle with the prime minister.

The state-run Israel Broadcasting Authority was notified an hour before Tuesday's broadcast that "Mabat LaHadashot" (A glance at the news), which has been on air for 49 years, was to be shut down.

Choking back tears, Channel 1 News anchor Geula Even announced on air that Mabat's broadcast would be its last. The program's staff turned out for a tearful send-off and sang the national anthem.

Netanyahu has said the broadcaster's shutdown is part of reforms to create a new replacement organization. But staffers say Netanyahu was unhappy with what he considered critical coverage and is trying to control the media.