Controversial TV host Mehdi Hasan has announced he is leaving American news network MSNBC after he was criticised for being anti-Isarel and his show was cancelled.
Hasan was expected to stay on as an analyst after his show was canned when the network lost 33 per cent of its primetime viewers in the wake of the October 7 Hamas attack.
But the British host announced during his last show on Sunday night that he was leaving the network.
He told viewers: “I’ve decided that it’s time for me to look for a new challenge.”
It comes after Hasan was repeatedly scolded for his anti-Israel stance on the network that refuses to refer to Hamas as terrorists.
Despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, Hasan suggested Israel was behind the blast at the al-Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza and not Hamas.
He said Israel should “allow foreign journalists & international war crimes investigators into Gaza to see for themselves; to gather evidence at the scene; to interview eyewitnesses”.
He likened Israel’s defensive action in Gaza to Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
“A lot of people around the world see Russia and Israel the same. Israel is the occupier of the West Bank and Gaza.”
In a combative interview with Israel advisor Mark Regev, before Israel and Hamas reached a hostage deal, Hasan accused Israel of turning down a deal.
"Sorry, Mehdi, that’s just disinformation,” Regev said. “Hamas put nothing on the table that could be worked with and so that’s just not correct to say there was an option."
Regev criticised Hasan for not informing viewers that Hamas controls the Gaza Health Ministry.
"You have to say the ‘Hamas-controlled Gaza Health Ministry," he said.
Hasan replied: "I don’t have to say what you ask me to say."
In 2019 Hasan was forced to apologise after old comments surfaced in which he compared non-Muslims and atheists to “cattle” and said “homosexuals” defied Islam.
“All of these ulama unanimously agree that at the very minimum if Yazid was not a Kaffir - then at the very minimum he was a fasiq, a transgressor, a breaker of Islamic laws, a corrupt individual, a tyrant, a killer a drunkard, a dog lover, a music lover, a homosexual, a paedophile, a sexual deviant, someone who slept with his own mother,” he said in the old recording about Islamic law.
“In this respect the Quran describes the atheist as cattle. As cattle of those who grow the crops and do not stop and wonder about this world.”
In his apology he said: “Like a lot of journos (humans?) I’ve said things years ago that I now deeply regret. Chief among them for me is, more than a decade ago, in my 20s, when I wasn’t a public figure, I gave a bunch of speeches to students on Islam/extremism. And I said dumb offensive ranty stuff.”
Also in 2019, when he was an Al Jazeera host, he defended congresswoman Ilhan Omar who said the Jewish state "has hypnotized the world" and committed "evil doings."
Hasan said that Omar had "maybe unwittingly echoed tropes. She hasn't said anything about Jews. She talked about supporters of Israel."