Arab News appoints Somayya Jabarti as Assistant Editor-in-Chief

Somayya Jabarti is an award-winning Saudi journalist.
Updated 31 October 2019

Arab News appoints Somayya Jabarti as Assistant Editor-in-Chief

  • * Among other tasks, Jabarti will oversee training and development program as well newspaper’s gender-balance project.

RIYADH: Arab News, the Middle East’s leading English-language daily, announces the appointment of Somayya Jabarti in the capacity of Assistant Editor-in-Chief. Jabarti will assume the role as of 3 November 2019, she will work alongside deputy editor Tarek Mishkhas out of the newspaper’s headquarters in Riyadh. Her role will encompass several local, regional and international responsibilities. 

“We are delighted to announce the return of Somayya to the Arab News family. She brings invaluable editorial and managerial experience and we look forward to her contributions to our vision and expanding operations," said Faisal J. Abbas, Editor-in-Chief of Arab News. “Somayya will also play a vital role in the training and development of our reporters and in helping Arab News achieve its goal of having the Middle East’s first gender-balanced newsroom by the end of next year,” he added. 

An Arab News veteran, Jabarti recently headed the Saudi Government's Center for International Communication (CIC). Prior to that, she became the kingdom's first-ever female newspaper editor when she succeeded Khaled al-Maeena at the helm of Saudi Gazette in 2014. Jabarti has nearly two decades of media experience, she was selected as one of the BBC’s 100 Women List in 2015, she has also been listed as one of Arabian Business’ Top 100 Most powerful Arab Women and was among Al Arabiya English’s Top 10 Muslim Women that made headlines in 2014. Additionally among other awards, she was the recipient of the Arab Woman Award for media in 2015.


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.