More evidence of Saudi influence over Independent Arabia

The winds of normalisation seem to be blowing even inside the editorial boardroom of Independent Arabia (a joint venture of the UK based Independent and the Saudi media group SRMG), perhaps the most problematic Arabic media outlet among those bearing a Western name and a commitment to professional standards.

Last night (August 19th) it was Independent Arabia’s editor in chief Adhwan Alahmari who released the following statement on twitter:

“Saudi Arabia’s adherence to the [2002 Arab League] peace initiative is its long standing position, yet it may transform in the future. The region’s variables and the fuss over the relations with Israel will change the way to interact with the Palestinian cause. The public sentiment became flexible towards any contact with Tel Aviv; natural reactions to the shows of disavowal and insult which some Palestinians have been exercising for decades. [It’s a] fact.”

Just like in the case of the website’s change of policy regarding Nakba Day, the statement is a result of Saudi resentments towards Palestinians, once again articulated by the news outlet’s chief editor, via twitter.

However, as we noted back then, this only further proves Riyadh’s oversight of the news outlet agenda, and it’s not likely to make its reporting any more impartial, as positive as the coverage of Israel might become over time.

An Arabic version of this post is here

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