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Al Jazeera Journalists Quit Over Network's Biased Coverage

Thu, July 11, 2013

Egyptian journalists demand the ouster of Al Jazeera reporters from a recent press conference in Egypt.

Egyptian journalists demand the ouster of Al Jazeera reporters from a recent press conference in Egypt.

As Al Jazeera America gears up for its launch in America, twenty-two of the network’s Arabic language staffers resigned this week saying that the network’s management had instructed them to provide coverage of the recent events in Egypt to favor the Muslim Brotherhood.

News anchor Karem Mahmoud of Al Jazeera’s Mubasher Misr was quoted as saying, “There are instructions to us to telecast certain news.” Mahmoud further accused the coverage provided by the Qatari channel as lacking in professionalism, saying, “The management in Doha [Qatar] provokes sedition among the Egyptian people and has an agenda against Egypt and other Arab countries.”

Luxor Correspondent Haggag Salama, who also resigned the network, accused Al Jazeera of “airing lies and misleading viewers.” The same reason was given by four Egyptian nationals who were working at the network’s Doha headquarters, who resigned in protest of the “biased editorial policy” in the way the network covered Egypt.

At a press coverage where the Egyptian military was explaining the measures it had taken to subdue the violence perpetrated by Muslim Brotherhood supporters, Egyptian journalists demanded the ouster of reporters from Al Jazeera (see video below). The Al Jazeera reporters eventually left.

Shortly before the army removed Egypt’s Islamist President Mohammed Morsi, security forced moved into the network’s station and arrested five staff members. The channel was forbidden to broadcast from a pro-Morsi rally; the crew slated for the broadcast was also detained.

Distain for the network is evident in its online nickname on social media as “Al-Jazeera Ikhwan (Brotherhood).”