BBC Arabic Television

BBC Arabic Television

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BBC Arabic Television is a news and information television
Television
Television is a telecommunication medium for transmitting and receiving moving images that can be monochrome or colored, with accompanying sound...

 channel broadcast to the Middle East
Middle East
The Middle East is a region that encompasses Western Asia and Northern Africa. It is often used as a synonym for Near East, in opposition to Far East...

 by the BBC
BBC
The British Broadcasting Corporation is a British public service broadcaster. Its headquarters is at Broadcasting House in the City of Westminster, London. It is the largest broadcaster in the world, with about 23,000 staff...

. It was launched at 0956 GMT on 11 March 2008. The service was announced in October 2005 and was to start broadcasting in Autumn 2007, but was delayed. Presenters include Tareq Alaas, Tony Khouri, Malak Jaafar, Fida Bassil, Rania Al-Attar and Hamdan Jerjawi.

BBC Arabic Television is run by the BBC World Service
BBC World Service
The BBC World Service is the world's largest international broadcaster, broadcasting in 27 languages to many parts of the world via analogue and digital shortwave, internet streaming and podcasting, satellite, FM and MW relays...

; as such, it is funded from a grant-in-aid from the British Foreign Office
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office, commonly called the Foreign Office or the FCO is a British government department responsible for promoting the interests of the United Kingdom overseas, created in 1968 by merging the Foreign Office and the Commonwealth Office.The head of the FCO is the...

 and not the television licence
Television licence
A television licence is an official licence required in many countries for the reception of television broadcasts...

 that is used to fund the BBC's domestic broadcasting. The service is based in the Egton Wing of Broadcasting House
Broadcasting House
Broadcasting House is the headquarters and registered office of the BBC in Portland Place and Langham Place, London.The building includes the BBC Radio Theatre from where music and speech programmes are recorded in front of a studio audience...

 in London, but some technical aspects are managed at the BBC World Service's Bush House. 24-hour programming began 19 January 2009.

BBC Arabic can also be seen via www.bbcarabic.com. The website includes a 16:9 live stream of the channel.

BBC Newshour, an hour-long news bulletin is broadcast twice a day. In this programme, the top stories of the day are analysed and covered by BBC correspondents around the world. Other bulletins are half-an-hour long. The top stories are broadcast on the channel every fifteen minutes.

This is not the first time that the BBC has attempted to set up an Arabic television service. The previous attempt closed on 21 April 1996, after two years on air, when the BBC's partners, Orbit Communications Corporation
Orbit Satellite Television and Radio Network
Orbit Communications Company was a privately owned Pay TV network, operating in the Middle East, North Africa and Europe. Owned by Saudi Arabia-based Mawarid Holding , it was the first fully digital, multi-channel, multi-lingual, pay television service in the Middle East and North Africa...

 (owned by King Fahd's cousin, Prince Khaled) pulled the plug after the BBC broadcast an episode of Panorama
Panorama (TV series)
Panorama is a BBC Television current affairs documentary programme, which was first broadcast in 1953, and is the longest-running public affairs television programme in the world. Panorama has been presented by many well known BBC presenters, including Richard Dimbleby, Robin Day, David Dimbleby...

that was critical of the Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia , commonly known in British English as Saudi Arabia and in Arabic as as-Sa‘ūdiyyah , is the largest state in Western Asia by land area, constituting the bulk of the Arabian Peninsula, and the second-largest in the Arab World...

n government. Many of the staff who worked for the original BBC Arabic Television service went on to work for Al Jazeera
Al Jazeera
Al Jazeera is an independent broadcaster owned by the state of Qatar through the Qatar Media Corporation and headquartered in Doha, Qatar...

 television. Al Jazeera is one of BBC Arabic Television's main competitors.

In 2011, as the British government
Government of the United Kingdom
Her Majesty's Government is the central government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The Government is led by the Prime Minister, who selects all the remaining Ministers...

 cut funding to the BBC, forcing the BBC World Service
BBC World Service
The BBC World Service is the world's largest international broadcaster, broadcasting in 27 languages to many parts of the world via analogue and digital shortwave, internet streaming and podcasting, satellite, FM and MW relays...

 to close down its services in five languages, the government simultaneously increased funding to the BBC Arabic service, in the words of Foreign Secretary William Hague
William Hague
William Jefferson Hague is the British Foreign Secretary and First Secretary of State. He served as Leader of the Conservative Party from June 1997 to September 2001...

, to "assist the BBC Arabic Service to continue their valuable work in the region
Arab world
The Arab world refers to Arabic-speaking states, territories and populations in North Africa, Western Asia and elsewhere.The standard definition of the Arab world comprises the 22 states and territories of the Arab League stretching from the Atlantic Ocean in the west to the Arabian Sea in the...

".

Competitors

  • Al Alam
    Al-Alam News Network
    Al-Alam is an Iranian Arabic satellite TV station.The network's political coverage tends to be the most popular; however, other subjects, such as commentaries, analysis, business and sports also get a share of the audience. Programs are broadcast for over 300 million Arabic-speaking people around...

  • Al Arabiya
    Al Arabiya
    Al Arabiya is a Pan-Arabist Saudi-owned Arabic-language television news channel. Launched on March 3, 2003, the channel is based in Dubai Media City, United Arab Emirates, and is majority-owned by the Saudi broadcaster Middle East Broadcasting Center ....

  • Al Ekhbariya
    Al Ekhbariya
    Al Ekhbariya is a Arabic news and current affairs satellite TV channel based in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.Launched on 11 January 2004, its aim according to its director was to present "a new image of the Gulf Arab state" to the wider region and the world...

  • Al Hurra
  • Al Jazeera
    Al Jazeera
    Al Jazeera is an independent broadcaster owned by the state of Qatar through the Qatar Media Corporation and headquartered in Doha, Qatar...

  • France 24
    France 24
    France 24 is an international news and current affairs television channel. The service is aimed at the overseas market, similar to BBC World News, DW-TV, NHK World and RT, and broadcast through satellite and cable operators throughout the world. During 2010 the channel started broadcasting through...

  • Rusiya Al-Yaum
    Rusiya Al-Yaum
    Rusiya Al-Yaum a Russian TV news channel broadcasting in Arabic and headquartered in Moscow, Russia...


External links