Simon Cowell quits The X Factor Israel

Simon Cowell quits X Factor Israel after increased violence leaves 256 Palestinians dead.
Simon Cowell in an episode of America's Got Talent season 15. Photo credit: Getty

British reality TV star Simon Cowell has quit his role as a judge on the upcoming season of The X Factor Israel.

According to Variety, a spokesperson for the show's production company said the 61-year-old is pulling out "for his own reasons".

Cowell's representatives had previously contacted the company with "legitimate concerns" over the escalation of violence in Israel and the Palestinian territories this year.

The 11 days of increased fighting resulted in the killing of 256 Palestinians - including 66 children - along with 13 people in Israel.

Neither Cowell nor his representatives have confirmed the move to media.

The X Factor Israel launched in 2013 and this year's fourth season will, for the first time, select Israel's entry for the 2022 Eurovision Song Contest.

Cowell has judged on the UK and US versions of The X Factor, along with other shows like America's Got Talent.

He announced his joining The X Factor Israel in December, saying at the time: "Over the years we have discovered incredible talents from around the world through the X Factor format. I can barely wait to see what the Israelis have to offer."

In Aotearoa, there were two seasons of The X Factor NZ, which ran in 2013 and 2015 on Three.