Saudi Arabia chairs meeting to evaluate Arab Media Action Plan

The meeting was chaired by Turki bin Marzooq Al-Omari, the director of media operations in charge of the Arab League file at the Saudi Ministry of Media. (SPA)
Updated 31 October 2019

Saudi Arabia chairs meeting to evaluate Arab Media Action Plan

  • The Arab Media Action Plan was formulated during the extraordinary session of the Arab Information Ministers Council (AIMC) held on Aug.15, 2001.

CAIRO: The first meeting of the expert group assessing the Arab Media Action Plan started at the headquarters of the General Secretariat of the Arab League in Cairo on Wednesday.

The meeting was chaired by Turki bin Marzooq Al-Omari, the director of media operations in charge of the Arab League file at the Saudi Ministry of Media, with the participation of media experts and representatives of member states of the Arab League and of media organizations, unions and other bodies.

The Arab Media Action Plan was formulated during the extraordinary session of the Arab Information Ministers Council (AIMC) held on Aug.15, 2001. 

It focused on the Palestinian cause, presenting to the whole world the crimes committed by the Israeli occupation against the Palestinian people, land, sanctities and properties. It also fights terrorism and seeks to corrects the negative stereotype of Arabs and Islam abroad.

To cope with the developments the Arab region has witnessed in recent years and the resulting distortion of the image of Arabs and Islam in the West, the plan has been updated several times.

Al-Omari conveyed the greetings of the Minister of Media Turki Al-Shabanah, who is chairman of the 50th session of the Council of Arab Information Ministers, to the group.

Al-Omari said during the opening session that they would discuss the Arab Media Action Plan to establish a positive image of Arab political positions and of Arabs and Islam more generally.

Dr. Fawzi Al-Ghuwail, director of the AIMC’s technical secretariat, reviewed a report on the projects that have been accomplished, stressing the importance of the main axis of the team’s work in evaluating the media action plan.

“The plan faced many challenges during the past year during the implementation of its projects due to the conflicts in some of the region’s countries. This led to a lack of focus on the Palestinian cause and disrupted the plan’s relevant projects.”

He added: “This meeting seeks to conduct a comprehensive evaluation of the plan’s activities, including the introduction of some amendments and new ideas. New activities might also be introduced in accordance with the priorities of Arab Media Action Plan at this stage.”

He called on Arab countries to “present feasible proposals and provide the necessary funding for the activities and programs.”


Lebanese journalist Roula Khalaf becomes first female editor of Financial Times

Updated 12 November 2019

Lebanese journalist Roula Khalaf becomes first female editor of Financial Times

  • Khalaf has served as deputy editor, foreign editor and Middle East editor during her more than two decades at FT
  • Khalaf will join Katharine Viner at the Guardian as one of the few women to edit major newspapers in Britain

LONDON: Lebanese journalist Roula Khalaf will become the first woman to edit the Financial Times in its 131-year history after Lionel Barber, Britain’s most senior financial journalist, said he would step down.
Barber said on Tuesday he would leave in January after 14 years as editor and 34 years at the Nikkei-owned newspaper, which had one million paying readers in 2019, with digital subscribers accounting for more than 75% of total circulation.
Khalaf has served as deputy editor, foreign editor and Middle East editor during her more than two decades at the salmon-pink FT and in recent years has sought to increase diversity in the newsroom and attract more female readers, while also becoming the publication’s first Arab editor.
“It’s a great honor to be appointed editor of the FT, the greatest news organization in the world.
“I look forward to building on Lionel Barber’s extraordinary achievements,” said Khalaf, whose earlier writing for Forbes magazine had earned her a small role in Martin Scorsese’s The Wolf of Wall Street.
Her article described the leading character Jordan Belfort as sounding like a twisted version of Robin Hood who takes from the rich and gives to himself and his merry band of brokers.
Khalaf will join Katharine Viner at the Guardian as one of the few women to edit major newspapers in Britain and one of few leading female editors in the world after Jill Abramson left the New York Times.
Before joining the FT in 1995, Khalaf worked at Forbes in New York and earned a master’s at Columbia University and graduated from Syracuse University.
Tsuneo Kita, chairman of Japan’s Nikkei which bought the FT from Pearson in 2015, said in a statement Khalaf was chosen for her sound judgment and integrity.
“We look forward to working closely with her to deepen our global media alliance.”
Nikkei’s Kita described Barber as a strategic thinker and true internationalist, adding he was very sad to see him leave.
“However, both of us agree it is time to open a new chapter,” he said.
During his time as editor, Barber engineered a successful push into online subscription that protected the title as others battled an unprecedented collapse in advertising revenue, as well as managing the move to a new owner.