Arabic Broadcaster Al-Jazeera Shut Down In Egypt

Posted By on January 30, 2011

It was just a matter of time before this happened…The Qatari government bankrolled Al-Jazeera when it launched in 1996 and is believed to still fund the station, but it operates with considerable editorial freedom compared with other government-run media outlets in the Arab world.

Anti-government riots also have spread to Yemen, where President Ali Abdullah Saleh claimed the tone of Al-Jazeera’s coverage incited “unrest, violence and sabotage in the Arab countries.”

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DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — The pan-Arab broadcaster Al-Jazeera said Sunday that Egyptian authorities ordered the closure of its Cairo news hub overseeing coverage of the country’s massive street protests, denouncing the move as an attempt to “stifle and repress” open reporting.

The Qatar-based network has given nearly round-the-clock coverage to the unprecedented uprising against Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and had faced criticism by some government supporters and other Arab leaders as a forum to inspire more unrest.

Al-Jazeera called the Egyptian ban “an act designed to stifle and repress the freedom of reporting by the network and its journalists.”

Egypt has moved aggressively to try to control mobile phones and the web since the protests swelled late last week — inspired by the uprising by drove Tunisia’s long-ruling leader from power. Egyptian authorities cut mobile phones and web links in tactics that mirrored the information choke-hold imposed by Iran’s security forces in the chaos after last year’s disputed elections.

More at: http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fgw-egypt-al-jazeera-20110131,0,148417.story

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