Sudan suspends pan-Arab TV stations amid strained ties


Sudan has suspended three pan-Arab TV stations, accusing them of “unprofessional reporting and harmful publishing”.

United Arab Emirates (UAE)-owned Sky News Arabia and Saudi-owned Al Arabiya and Al Hadath, which have been affected by the directive, have reported extensively on the civil war and political turmoil in Sudan.

The suspension was prompted by the broadcasters’ “lack of commitment to the required professionalism and transparency” and their failure to renew their licences, Information Minister Minister Graham Abdel Gader was quoted as saying.

The UAE-funded Sky News Arabia’s suspension also stemmed from “harmful publishing”, according to local media.

Both Al Hadath and Al Arabiya said they were not officially informed of the suspension and have often renewed their licences.

The suspension comes just days after Sudan’s foreign ministry accused Sky News Arabia of airing a forged militant report. The channel used a video of an attack by the al-Shabab militant group in Somalia in 2016 in a story about militant groups allegedly fighting alongside the Sudanese Armed Forces.

Relations between Sudan and the UAE have strained after the Sudanese army and Western media accused the UAE of supplying weapons to the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) in the nearly year-long conflict.

The Sudanese Journalists Syndicate (SJS) termed the decision a “clear violation of freedom of expression and the press”.


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