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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Palestinian Government Asks Hamas to End 'Mickey' Show

GAZA STRIP -- The Palestinian government urged Hamas on Wednesday to shelve a children's show on a Hamas television station in which a Mickey Mouse look-alike calls for Israel to be vanquished and Islam to "lead the world."

"Tomorrow's Pioneers," which attracted complaints from Israeli groups, features a host, Farfur, dressed in a costume to resemble Walt Disney's famous cartoon character.

He and a young female co-host instruct their young viewers on Hamas' militant brand of Muslim piety.

"We will restore to this nation its glory, and we will liberate [Jerusalem mosque] Al-Aqsa, with Allah's will, and we will liberate Iraq, with Allah's will, and we will liberate the Muslim countries invaded by murderers," Farfur said in one show.

Following complaints by Israeli watchdog groups that attracted foreign scrutiny, Palestinian Information Minister Mustafa Barghouthi said he had asked that broadcasts of "Tomorrow's Pioneers" be halted so the show's content could be reviewed.

"I urged that Hamas suspend the program and they have withdrawn it because it was wrong to use a program directed at children to convey political messages," said Barghouthi, a political independent in the Hamas-led Palestinian government.

"Any media outlet that breaks Palestinian broadcasting law will be penalized by the Information Ministry," he said.

A Hamas official said the group's Al-Aqsa Television station was considering a possible change to the show's format. The next episode is scheduled for Friday.

Hamas advocates Israel be destroyed and replaced by a pan-Islamic Arab confederation.