The state-operated TVR3 Verde, a channel directed to rural communities, began broadcasting Dec. 3 with a program that included a Christmas carol with lyrics that included a slur to describe Jews and a suggestion Jews belong "in the chimney as smoke," the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, a news service based in New York, reported Wednesday.
TVR3 said in a statement it did not choose the song, but broadcast songs compiled by the Center for Preservation and Promotion of Traditional Culture, a local cultural organization.
The statement referred to the song as "an uninspired choice."
MCA Romania, a watchdog group on anti-Semitism, said it wrote a letter of complaint to Romanian President Traian Basecu and to Prime Minister Victor Viorel Ponta, adding, "It is outrageous that none in the audience took a stance against the anti-Semitic Christmas carol that incites to burn the Jews."
It added it was "absolutely unacceptable that TVR3 tried to deny responsibility" by blaming the cultural group.