First Published: 2002-11-04

 
Al-Jazeera closed down in Kuwait
 

Qatar satellite TV accused for 'hostile' stand against Kuwait, Sheikh Sabah believes closure for security reasons.

 

Middle East Online

Qatar's Al-Raya accuses Riyadh of secretly leading war on Al-Jazeera

KUWAIT CITY - Kuwait closed down the office of Qatar's satellite channel Al-Jazeera because it took a "hostile" stand against Kuwait and for security reasons, senior Kuwaiti officials said in newspaper remarks published Monday.

"I believe the closure of this shop is better for security reasons. I don't consider it an office as much as I consider it a shop," Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah was quoted as saying in Al-Rai Al-Aam.

Sheikh Sabah said the station does not represent Qatar and that he was keen to separate the two.

Otherwise "they (Qatar) would have been able to control this station or stop it from committing any violations."

Al-Jazeera correspondent Saad al-Enezi said on Sunday that he had received a telephone call from Kuwait's information ministry officially notifying him that a decision had been taken to close down the station.

"They said it was because Al-Jazeera is biased," Enezi said.

Kuwaiti Information Minister Sheikh Ahmad al-Fahd al-Sabah told Al-Watan: "News should be carried in a professional way by Al-Jazeera," whose coverage of recent events here "took a hostile stand against Kuwait."

The emirate could bear aggression against people but not against the country itself, Sheikh Ahmad said without elaborating.

"The decision has already been taken. We're sorry to take the decision especially when Kuwait is a model in democracy and press freedoms," Sheikh Ahmad said, adding that Al-Jazeera had been warned more than once in the past.

"We have dealt with Al-Jazeera on the basis that it is an independent station ... The majority of Kuwaitis are satisfied with the closure."

Qatar's Al-Raya newspaper, which generally reflects the official point of view, said it was Saudi Arabia that was "secretly leading a war on Al-Jazeera to reduce its presence" in the conservative Gulf states.

The kingdom is exercising "all sorts of pressure, including a decision to stop Saudi firms from advertising on Al-Jazeera," it said.

Al-Jazeera won world fame for its exclusive reports during the US-led strikes on Afghanistan and for its interviews with presumed terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden.

Launched in November 1996, Al-Jazeera is popular among Arab viewers but has irked many governments in the region for tackling political, social and at times sexual issues, previously regarded as taboo.

Al-Jazeera opened its Kuwait office in April 2001 with approval from Kuwaiti authorities.

 

Heavily bombarded Eastern Ghouta awaits UN resolution

Russia pours cold water on UN bid to condemn Iran over missiles to Yemen

Saudi Arabia to boost entertainment in next decade

Dutch parliament recognises 1915 Armenian massacre as genocide

Blatter supports Morocco bid for 2026 World Cup

Iran police shoving headscarf protester sparks social media storm

Syria regime continues to pound Ghouta as world stutters

UN Security Council to vote Friday on Syria ceasefire

Dubai says Djibouti illegally seized African port

Russia says Syria rebels rejected offer to evacuate E. Ghouta

UN diplomats press for Syria ceasefire without Russia veto

Iranian minister’s presence at UN rights meeting angers critics

Iran warns it will leave nuke deal if banks cannot do business

Qatar to plant thousands of trees to ‘beautify’ World Cup venues

Pro-Kurdish party says Turkey lying about 'no civilian deaths' in Afrin

African migrants protest Israeli detention policy

Egypt sentences 21 to death for planning attacks

Israeli handball teams in Qatar spark furious outcry from locals

UN report highlights S.Sudan journalist treatment

Palestinian dies after being shot by Israeli soldiers

Gulf states urge Syria to end Ghouta violence

Wanted Bahraini militants die at sea en route to Iran

Iran's Ahmadinejad calls for immediate free elections

Merkel calls for end to 'massacre' in Syria

Iraq urges FIFA to lift ban on hosting internationals

Carnage of Ghouta's bombs breaking families

Blockaded Gaza Strip forced to pump sewage into sea

African migrants start hunger strike over Israel expulsion

UN chief 'deeply alarmed' by Eastern Ghouta violence

Three militiamen killed in Libya car bomb attack

Russia denies ‘groundless’ accusations of role in Ghouta killings

Turkey says whoever helps YPG is 'legitimate target'

Morocco dismantles IS-linked terrorist cell

Turkey urged to end gas standoff with Cyprus

PKK attack near Iraq kills 2 Turkish soldiers

Netanyahu confidant to testify against him

Iran emergency teams recover bodies from plane crash site

Ten dead in more Syrian regime strikes on East Ghouta

Bahrain activist sentenced to 5 years for Yemen tweets

Lebanese president makes landmark visit to Iraq

US declares readiness to talk Mideast peace

Bloodbath in Syria's eastern Ghouta

Abbas calls for peace conference in rare UN speech

Egyptian court adds leading government critic on terror list

Yemen government offensive threatens heritage site