The Israeli government has issued a warning to the BBC, indicating that the network may be banned from reporting in the country due to its refusal to classify Hamas as a terrorist organisation, reports Arab News.
A senior Israeli official expressed the government's concerns, emphasising that the BBC might face repercussions if it continued to operate in a manner "inconsistent with our legal framework."
In an interview with the Daily Mail on Thursday, Israeli President Isaac Herzog called the BBC's stance "atrocious."
"The fact that it does not recognize Hamas as a terror organisation requires a complete legal battle and public battle," Herzog said. "What other type of torture do they want before they decide it [is] a terrorist organization?"
Herzog also highlighted what he claimed was a double standard in the way the BBC has characterised similar acts of violence in the past, citing the London Bridge, Westminster, and Paris attacks as examples of events the BBC has reported as terrorist acts.
Another Israeli official, discussing potential measures against broadcasters, told The Telegraph, "We're a democratic country and we will use all the tools a democratic state has. If any broadcast channel uses terminology we think is crossing the line in accordance with our laws, we will [take action]."
Earlier this week, Israeli media reported that Shlomo Karhi, the communications minister, had been given the green light by the attorney general to set up regulations aimed at curbing Qatar-based TV network Al Jazeera's reporting on the ground in Israel.
On Friday, the Israeli government approved emergency regulations that will allow it to temporarily shut down Al Jazeera over its coverage of the ongoing conflict in Gaza.
Why BBC doesn't call Hamas militants 'terrorists'
According to John Simpson, world affairs editor at the BBC, the answer to why the BBC doesn't call Hamas militants 'terrorists' goes right back to the BBC's founding principles.
"Terrorism is a loaded word, which people use about an outfit they disapprove of morally. It's simply not the BBC's job to tell people who to support and who to condemn - who are the good guys and who are the bad guys," Simpson wrote in a column.
"We regularly point out that the British and other governments have condemned Hamas as a terrorist organisation, but that's their business. We also run interviews with guests and quote contributors who describe Hamas as terrorists.
"The key point is that we don't say it in our voice. Our business is to present our audiences with the facts, and let them make up their own minds."