The hotbird satellite system covers Europe and other regions. Viewers who have Hot Bird are unable to watch Press TV on their system. The channel has been taken off air by an order from the European Commission. The decision to take Press TV off the air was also influenced by pro-Israeli anti-Iranian pressure groups.
The US based lobby group United Against a Nuclear Iran was boasting on their website about how they piled pressure on European satellite services to remove the 19 Iranian stations off the air. Their campaigns have stretched from pressuring banks to oil companies to cut off all ties with Iran. They are a part of a bigger network that works towards increasing the sanctions against Iran.
In early 2012 Ofcom, the UK's media regulating body, decided to remove Press TV from the British satellite platform. And now several months later the European satellite provider Eutelsat has ordered the British based company Arqiva to stop transmitting channels from IRIB satellite.
I then contacted Arqiva's Head of Public Relations, Gary Follows, for an interview. He declined by saying they were currently not giving interviews on the subject. He later issued the same statement to IRIB saying:
Massoud Shadjareh of the Islamic Human Rights Commission has also looked into the issue and cannot find a satisfactory reason for banning the Iranian channels. He believes there is a bigger agenda at play.
Press TV have now set up a facebook petition and urges supporters to join their campaign against the censorship. They believe Eutelsat's move was illegal and a blatant violation of freedom of speech.