Saudi prince to launch satellite station aimed at the west
Saudi Arabia-Regional, Politics, 7/5/2002
The Saudis have been trying to talk to the Western media in order to improve their image together with that of the Arabs and Muslims at the Western public opinion. An image which was greatly affected as a result of September 11 aggressions in the USA.
One member of the Saudi royal family Prince Mansour Bin Nasser Ibn Abdul Aziz announced this week the launching of a project to launch the first Arab station talking to the west by the English language and to cover in the beginning America and Canada, very soon.
The mass media in the US had focused on Saudi Arabia from which 15 persons among 19 of those who carried out the September 11 in New York and Washington and resulted in killing 3000 persons.
The declaration made by Washington that the leader of al-Qaida organization Osama Bin Laden is the likely executor of these attacks helped in feeding the campaigns by the Western media against the Saudis. In the Arab and Islamic world certain circles considered misunderstanding of Islam as being behind these campaigns, while other circles see that these campaigns are a result of the impact of the American media.
Meantime, the secretary general of the Islamic world league Abdullah al-Turkey, whose main headquarters in Mecca (in the west of Saudi Arabia), financed by Riyadh is on a visit to the US in order to explain the view point of the Islamic world for the American officials.
Al-Turkey, who met officials for churches, said in statements issued on Wednesday in Riyadh that what is published "in the American media brings about hatred among peoples and obstructs the march of dialogue ." He added "there is misunderstanding concerning Islam."
However, the Saudi and the Arab mass media, in general tried to contribute to maintaining a better dialogue with the West, but the message was not received in the optimum way and that was for several reasons, especially due to its limited resources.
The Saudi businessman Prince Mansour said that the Arab satellite station which will be launched shortly at a cost of USD 160 million and broadcast from London would contribute to correcting Arab and Islamic conceptions conceived by the West and distorted following the September 11 attacks.
He continued the "satellite channel will in the first phase broadcast in English and will continue its plan to broadcast in the basic European languages "English, German, Italian, French and Spanish" and will cover in the first period of broadcasting the US and Canada until pan coverage of all European states.
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