Twitter was flooded with celebratory messages on Thursday for Saudi international newspaper Asharq Al-Awsat on its 40th anniversary.
The newspaper was launched in 1978 with London as its headquarters, and belongs to the Saudi Research and Marketing Group. It covers news throughout the MENA region, the US, Europe and Asia and has bureaus and correspondents in Riyadh, Jeddah, Dammam, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Washington, New York and Belgium.
The idea behind establishing an Arab newspaper in the center of the UK came from Hishem Ali Hafiz (co-founder of Arab News) and his brother, Mohammed Ali Hafiz, according to Asharq Al-Awsat’s first Editor in Chief, Jihad Khazen. Currently, it is run by Ghassan Charbel and is printed in 18 destinations.
Arab News’ Editor in Chief, Faisal J. Abbas, was among the first to contribute to the Asharq Al-Awsat 40th anniversary hashtag on the social media site: “I want to thank Asharq Al-Awsat for all that it has given me.”
The editor in chief established the media-supplement (section) for Asharq Al-Awsat, which has displayed some of the biggest experiences and unions of the most influential press institutions and journalists.
“Fourteen years I’ve spent here, and I still feel so welcome. It’s a factory of professionalism and journalism. Forty years of enriching knowledge and journalism,” said Mosaed Al-Ziyani, UAE bureau chief at Asharq Al-Awsat.
Saud Kateb, the Saudi deputy minister for public diplomacy affairs, tweeted: “My beloved (newspaper) and companion for 20 years: I’ve been living and breathing journalism, not for a job, because of it.”
“On this day, 40 years ago, Asharq Al-Awsat saw the light, taking the first steps for Arabic journalism for the first time in history to step out of its local sphere into the international arena,” said Saudi journalist Nasir Al-Haqbani.