Submitted by Laura Miller on
The State Department's Inspector General is investigating Al Hurra, the U.S.-funded, Arabic-language satellite TV network. According to the Financial Times, the Broadcasting Board of Governors asked for the investigation into "possible irregularities" with procurement and contracting as well as "concerns that viewing figures might be inflated." The BBG oversees Al Hurra, which has a budget of $49 million for 2005.
The House of Representatives Committee on International Relations subcommittee on oversight and investigations is also looking into the Virginia-based network, which broadcasts to 22 countries. The FT reports Kenneth Tomlinson -- BBG chair and until very recently a member of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting -- and Al Hurra news director Mouafac Harb will be called as witnesses for the November 10 hearing. According to the FT, Harb called the inspector general's investigation a general review into whether al-Hurra was fulfilling its mission. "There's a campaign against al-Hurra by some people in this city who don't like our dedication to freedom and democracy," he said.
Laura Miller replied on Permalink
Good article about AlHurra on at The American Prospect
Diane Farsetta replied on Permalink
Correction to American Prospect article
The American Prospect has published a correction to [http://www.prospect.org/web/page.ww?section=root&name=ViewWeb&articleId=10602 its article] on the Middle East Broadcasting Network, which is [http://www.prospect.org/web/page.ww?section=root&name=ViewWeb&articleId=10602 available here] and copied, in part, below: