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President Nicolas Sarkozy thanked the Al-Jazeera network Tuesday for deciding not to air footage of the murders of French soldiers and children and warned that France would jam any other broadcaster who tried.
The Qatar-based Arabic-language channel this week received a video shot by an Islamic extremist recording his murders of seven people, including three young Jewish children, in southern France, but said it would not broadcast it.
"I am glad that the whole French and international media world believes that to broadcast these images would be an insult to the memory of children," Sarkozy said after Al-Jazeera responded to French fury by promising not to air them.
"Al-Jazeera took a reasonable decision and I warn that if any channel belonging to or close to institutions spreading terrorist ideas gets their hands on it we will not hesitate to do what we can to stop their signal."
Satellite jamming technology is imperfect but some regimes, notably Iran, have been accused of jamming incoming signals from space. France would also have commercial and legal means to pressure commercial satellite operators.
© 2012 AFP
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