Game show host gets into legal hot water over Israel’s capital city.
A popular Italian television quiz, L'Eredita, sparked controversy when in May of this year, a question about Israel surfaced on the show. The competitor said ‘Tel Aviv' when asked to give the name of the capital city. The talk show host, Flavio Insinna, did not accept this as the correct answer, and went on to correct the contestant by saying it was Jerusalem.
The Palestinian Association in Italy, and the Association of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, however, were not happy.
The Italian courts - where the matter ended up - agreed. The subsequent court ruling stated that "International law does not recognise Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Israel."
On June 5, Insinna tried to end the controversy by reading out a clarification. “We can involuntarily find ourselves at the centre of a controversy that calls into question events that certainly do not belong to a program like ours to intervene. On the issue, however, there are different positions. In view of this, we must not enter into such a delicate dispute, and we apologise for having raised it involuntarily.”
The case, which was settled in the Court of Rome’s Human Rights and Immigration division, found that "it is the Italian state that does not recognise Jerusalem as the capital."
The court went on to clarify itself.
“It is known that on December 21, 2017, Italy voted in favour of the United Nations General Assembly resolution that rejected the United States' decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. As it is known, the United Nations itself has repeatedly talked about the issue, condemning the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories and East Jerusalem, and denying any legal validity to Israel's decisions to make it its capital.”
The court concluded that UN resolutions "constitute conventional law directly applicable in our legal system. Taking for granted that the city of Jerusalem is the capital of the State of Israel is the dissemination of incorrect information. Defining the issue as a 'dispute', as was done by RAI [the Italian television station], is not enough to correct what happened”.
Italy’s national broadcaster, RAI, was ordered to pay all costs.