Bahrain invites Al Jazeera channel to sign MoU on cooperation

May 20, 2010

Bahrain’s culture and information ministry has invited Al Jazeera television station to agree on a memorandum of understanding that will define their relation and consolidate their cooperation, the ministry said.

“The Ministry of Culture and Information has invited Al Jazeera Satellite Channel to send a delegation to the Kingdom of Bahrain to discuss a Memorandum of Understanding that will define media cooperation between the two parties,” the ministry said in a statement carried by Bahrain News Agency on Thursday evening.

“The Ministry of Culture and Information would welcome the delegation’s visit to agree on the major clauses of the memorandum that will invigorate the activities of Al Jazeera office which was licensed on November 30,2008,” the statement said.

The Memorandum of Understanding will also reinforce cooperation between the ministry and the pan-Arab station in media training, transfer of technical expertise and the exchange of media material in the political, economic, cultural, sports and documentary fields, the ministry said.

The call was issued two days after the ministry said that it was freezing the work of Al Jazeera for flouting professional conventions.

The ministry said that it wanted to pen a specific framework with the Doha-based channel that would govern their relations.

Neither the ministry nor the channel explained the reasons for the move amid speculations that it was either related to a programme aired by Al Jazeera on poverty in Bahrain or to the mounting tension between the two neighbours following the shooting of a Bahraini fisherman who did not heed warnings from the Qatari coastguards after his boat strayed in their waters.

Shaikha Mai Bint Mohammad Al Khalifa, the culture and information minister, has defended the decision to “freeze the activities” of Al Jazeera, insisting that it was not politically motivated and that it was purely for professional reasons.

Al Jazeera on Wednesday said that it was puzzled by the move. In Paris, Reporters Without Borders urged Bahrain to reconsider its decision to freeze the bureau activities.




About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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