Saturday, April 23, 2011

Al-Jazeera Beirut bureau chief resigns

Al-Jazeera's Beirut Bureau Chief Ghassan Ben Jeddo

Source: Press TV

Al-Jazeera's Beirut Bureau Chief Ghassan Ben Jeddo has resigned over what he described "biased" coverage of Middle East revolutions by the Qatari-based satellite channel.

The renowned Tunisian-born journalist and television presenter tendered his resignation earlier this month for a number of reasons, most importantly Al-Jazeera's "lack of professionalism and objectivity" in covering the ongoing revolutions in Middle Eastern countries, including Yemen and Bahrain, As-Safir reported Friday.

There has been no official confirmation from Al-Jazeera management as to whether Ghassan's resignation has been accepted.

"Ghassan Ben Jeddo believes Al-Jazeera TV news channel no longer pursues an independent and unbiased policies, and quite conversely, is in pursuit of a certain type of policies regarding the brewing uprisings in the region," As-Safir reported.

The Tunisian journalist said the Qatari-based satellite channel has launched a smear campaign against the Syrian government and has turned into "a propaganda outlet," the report added.

The report added that while the station covered the events in Libya, Syria and Yemen, it barely mentioned the bloodshed in Bahrain.

People in Bahrain have been holding anti-government protests since February 14, demanding constitutional reforms as well as an end to the Al Khalifa monarchy.

Demonstrators maintain that they will continue to protest until their demands for freedom, constitutional monarchy, and a proportional voice in the government are met.

The peaceful popular movement in Bahrain has been violently repressed, leaving scores of anti-regime protesters killed and many others missing.

Prior to joining Al-Jazeera in 1997, Ben Jeddo worked for the BBC network, the London-based Al-Hayat daily and in a number of other Arab newspapers.

He is the only journalist to have interviewed the Hezbollah Secretary General Seyyed Hassan Nasrallah, during the Israel-Lebanon conflict. Ben Jeddo has also interviewed Leader of Lebanon's Progressive Socialist Party Walid Jumblat and former Cuban leader Fidel Castro.

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