Daily News Egypt, by Nourhan Fahmy. Read on here.
Channel founders include former Brotherhood member and former head of Al Jazeera Mubasher Misr
A newly launched news satellite network is sparking controversy in Egypt, due to its alleged Muslim Brotherhood bias.
The Qatari-funded channel, Al-Araby Al-Jadeed, was launched from London on Sunday, a highly symbolic date as it coincided with the fourth anniversary of the 25 January Revolution in Egypt.
Advertisements for the new channel appeared on Cairo streets and major highways including the 26 July corridor and the Ring Road. It sparked media controversy and demands for the billboards to be removed.
According to statements made by the Giza deputy governor in a Tuesday phone interview on Egyptian satellite network CBC, the governorate was “not aware” of the advertisements before they were placed on the streets.
Giza Governor Ali Abdel Rahman stated in a phone interview on another network, Sada Al-Balad, that the billboards would be removed “for not paying the fees”.
A Qatari-owned private holding company began funding a multi-platform international media endeavour in March 2014. The project included a website called Al-Araby Al-Jadeed (The New Arab), and a daily Arabic newspaper bearing the same name began to publish later in September, according to a BBC report.
The Al-Araby Television network, of which Al-Araby Al-Jadeed channel was the first to launch, addresses audiences in the Arab world, particularly the youth. It will broadcast news as well as political, social, cultural, and entertainment programmes, according to the network’s statement.
In a published interview with the network’s CEO, Islam Lotfy, described it as “attempting to deliver independent content attributed to what we may call the peoples’ media as opposed to state media or other media channels advocating religious extremism”.