Al Mayadeen

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Al Mayadeen
TypeNews broadcasting channel
Broadcast areaWorldwide[1][2]
NetworkAl Mayadeen Satellite Media Network
HeadquartersBeirut (main), Tunis, Cairo, Tehran
Language(s)Arabic, English, Spanish
Key peopleGhassan bin Jiddo (director), George Galloway (presenter)
Launched11 June 2012; 11 years ago (2012-06-11)
Links Edit this at Wikidata
Streaming media
Al Mayadeen LiveLiveStation link

Al Mayadeen (Arabic: الميادين, transl. "The Plazas") is an Iran-aligned[3][4] Lebanese pan-Arabist satellite news television channel based in the city of Beirut. Launched on 11 June 2012, it has news reporters in most of the Arab countries.[5] In the pan-Arabist television news market, it competes against Qatar-owned Al Jazeera and Saudi-owned Al Arabiya, and also against Sky News Arabia and BBC News Arabic.[6][7] At the time it was founded, most of the channel's senior staff were former correspondents and editors of Al Jazeera. Al Mayadeen has widely been categorized as pro-Hezbollah and pro-Bashar al-Assad.[5][3][4][8][9][10]

History, ownership and network[edit]

Former staff of Al Jazeera Arabic started Al-Mayadeen in Beirut in 2012, after becoming dissatisfied with Al Jazeera’s coverage of Syria.[11]

The channel is part of the Al Mayadeen satellite media network, which includes: a production company; a radio station; a website in Arabic, English, and Spanish; an advertising company; and other media-related projects.[12] Along with the original headquarters in Beirut,[13] Al Mayadeen maintains news networks and three major regional offices, one in Tunisia, another in Cairo, and a third in Tehran.[14]

When it was launched, the channel said that its owners are anonymous Arab businessmen.[14] There was speculation about the channel's funding, with commentators suggesting the channel is funded by Iran and Hezbollah, although this was denied by the channel's director.[5] Omar Ibhais, a freelance Lebanese TV producer, stated that the channel is a joint venture between the Iranians and Rami Makhlouf, cousin of Syrian President Bashar Assad.[15]

In 2019, a report by the London School of Economics Middle East Centre said the channel was "mooted to be backed by Iranian money".[11] In December 2023, a report by the Denis Diderot Committee argued that the broadcast of the channel by two Euteslat Group satellites are uplinked from two Italian teleports without the mandatory autorisation of the Italian communication authority, AGCOM.[16][17] The President of the Authority announced that a police investigation was launched.[18]


Tunisian journalist Ghassan bin Jiddo heads Al Mayadeen as the chair of the board of directors and program director of the channel.[14][15] He is the former head of Al Jazeera's Iran and Beirut offices and a former talk show host in the channel.[12][19] He resigned from the Qatar-based Al Jazeera in 2011, criticizing its reporting of the Syrian civil war.[5] Jiddo seemingly accused Al Jazeera of deviating from "professional broadcasting standards", emphasizing that Al Mayadeen would remain objective and unbiased.[6] Nayef Krayem, the owner of the Lebanon-based Al Ittihad TV and former director of the Hezbollah-affiliated Al-Manar,[20] was designated as the general manager of the channel,[3] but he resigned one month before its launch.

The staff of the channel include Lebanese journalists such as Sami Kulaib,[21] Ali Hashem, the former Al Jazeera war correspondent, who said he resigned from the channel because it refused to broadcast footage of militants on the Lebanese Syrian borders in the early days of the Syrian uprising,[12] Zahi Wehbe,[22] Lina Zahreddine, Lana Mudawwar, Muhammad Alloush, Ahmad Abu Ali and Dina Zarkat. Two Syrian journalists, Ramia Ibrahim and Futoun Abbasi, and two Palestinian journalists Kamal Khalaf and Ahmad Sobh as well as Yemeni Mona Safwan are also among its staff.[14] Like Jiddo, most of the channel's staff are former Al Jazeera correspondents and editors.[4]

George Galloway, a former British MP, was a presenter for the channel.[23][8] He was paid £18,000 for the first four months of 2014, for hosting two programmes a month in Beirut.[24] He continued to present for the station in 2016[25] and 2017.[26]

The channel has a network of reporters in the State of Palestine (specifically, in Gaza and Ramallah) and also, in Jerusalem, Israel.[14] Their task is reported to provide the channel with a daily news section in the news broadcast entitled "A Window into Palestine".[14] In addition, there are reporters of the channel in Amman, Tripoli, Rabat, Khartoum, Mauritania and Comoros.[14] The correspondent of the channel in Damascus was withdrawn in April 2014.[27]

Omar Abdel Qader, a Syrian cameraman working for Al Mayadeen, was killed by a sniper during clashes in Deir Ezzor, Syria, on 8 March 2014.[28]

Al Mayadeen correspondent Farah Omar and camera operator Rabih Me’mari were killed in Israeli strikes in Southern Lebanon in November 2023. The channel accused Israel of deliberately targeting its journalists because of the channel's pro-Palestinian and pro-Iranian stance. Hezbollah said it had retaliated against Israel's killing of the journalists by firing across the border at an Israeli base.[29]


Al Mayadeen is on air for 24 hours daily.[30] As of September 2013, the channel had ten daily news reports and nearly 17 distinct programs.[30] One of its programs is A Free Word, a show hosted by George Galloway.[31] The channel had formerly aired a program, namely Hadeeth Dimashq (Arabic: Damascus dialogue), focusing on the Syrian civil war, until April 2014, when it was discontinued.[27]

In 2022, it broadcast a three-hour interview with Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah to mark the 40th anniversary of the group.[32]

Political alignment[edit]

The name of the channel, Al Mayadeen, means "the squares" in English, indicating its objective "to provide coverage for the Arab popular actions on the squares of change in the context of the Arab spring revolutions".[33] The channel states that it provides journalism, which is "committed to nationalist, pan-Arab and humanitarian issues within the template of professional journalistic objectivity".[34] In addition, it presents itself as a "free and independent media project" with 500 staff and reporters in Arab and Western capitals.[14] Its slogan is "Reality as it is" and its editorial policy emphasizes that Palestine and resistance movements wherever they are found are its point of reference.[14] Following its first year of broadcast the channel began to be described as the "anti-Al Jazeera".[15][35][36]

When the channel was launched in 2012, Asharq Al-Awsat and France 24 reported that it was the latest expansion of Iran, Syria and Hezbollah in the field of media.[3][4] In 2013, Joe Khalil, author of a book about television in the Arab world, told The Daily Telegraph newspaper that the station is undoubtedly supportive of Assad.[8] The channel's alignment with Iran, Assad and Hezbollah was also expressed in a 2019 London School of Economics report[11] and a 2021 academic publication by Israeli scholar Barak Bouks.[37] A 2019 Danish study referred to it as Hezbollah-aligned.[38] In 2022, The Jewish Chronicle said the channel's director, Ghassan bin Jiddo, has spoken of his "friendship" with Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah.[32]

According to the Telegraph, Al Mayadeen's head of news is married to a former adviser to Assad.[8] It refers to the rebels in Syria as "terrorists", and to the actions of the Syrian government against the rebels as "cleansing" when reporting the Syrian civil war.[9]

On 6 November 2015, the Saudi-controlled Arabsat satellite TV organization suspended and banned Al Mayadeen from broadcasting on its satellite system.[11]

The network has been accused of antisemitism in pieces by The Jewish Chronicle and Jewish Journal.[32][39] According to Media Matters for America in 2021, Al Mayadeen used antisemitic conspiracy theories about George Soros in its coverage of the Pandora Papers "to sow doubt about whistleblowers and leaks".[40]

The network stated that the Palestinian cause is the channel's centerpiece.[41]

In September 2022, during the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine, Al Mayadeen spoke to Russian sources about setbacks in eastern Ukraine.[42] It has referred to the Government of Ukraine as a "Nazi regime" and promoted the discredited Ukraine bioweapons conspiracy theory.[43] British politician Jeremy Corbyn was criticised by Joan Ryan and the Simon Wiesenthal Center for appearing on the network during the war because of its perceived closeness to Iran and Hezbollah.[39]

Writing in Al Mayadeen in October 2022, Janna Al Kadri said that the death of Mahsa Amini in Iran was used by the West as an "opportunity to fuel Iran-phobia and Islamophobia". He described the hijab as "a symbol of the working class in its struggle for autonomy against the ongoing and impending assaults of imperialism".[44]


  1. ^ "Discover Al Mayadeen TV and all of its programmes on".
  2. ^ "Online voters select best photo in Andrei Stenin tilt".
  3. ^ a b c d Mohammed Al Jazairy (14 June 2012). "Al Mayadeen: The last attempt to revive pro-Assad media". Asharq Alawsat. Archived from the original on 31 December 2015. Retrieved 23 January 2015.
  4. ^ a b c d "War of the remote controls: new Arab TV channel launches to challenge Al-Jazeera". France 24. 11 June 2012. Retrieved 11 June 2012.
  5. ^ a b c d Zeina Karam (11 June 2012). "New pan-Arab satellite channel goes on air". Associated Press. Retrieved 13 February 2014.
  6. ^ a b Shane Farrell (6 June 2012). "Al Mayadeen: Political pandering or objective media". Now Lebanon. Archived from the original on 12 June 2012. Retrieved 11 June 2012.
  7. ^ "New pan-Arab TV satellite channel goes on air". The Denver Post. 11 June 2012. Archived from the original on 21 September 2013. Retrieved 12 June 2012.
  8. ^ a b c d Tim Walker (1 September 2013). "What George Galloway neglected to mention in Syria debate". The Daily Telegraph.
  9. ^ a b "Executive Summary" (PDF). Syria Cyber Watch. 25 November 2012. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2 December 2012. Retrieved 6 December 2012.
  10. ^ "New pan-Arab TV satellite channel goes on air". US News. 11 June 2012. Retrieved 12 June 2012.
  11. ^ a b c d Jessica Watkins (2019). "Satellite Sectarianisation or Plain Old Partisanship? Inciting Violence in the Arab Mainstream Media" (Report). London: LSE Middle East Centre. pp. 10–12. Retrieved 23 September 2022.
  12. ^ a b c "Al Mayadeen Satellite Channel to be launched". ArabAD. Archived from the original on 17 January 2013. Retrieved 11 June 2012.
  13. ^ "The curious CV of a former BBC Arabic journalist". BBC Watch. 3 May 2013. Archived from the original on 5 October 2013. Retrieved 3 October 2013.
  14. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Al Mayadeen TV: New Kid on the Block". Al Akhbar. 4 June 2012. Retrieved 11 June 2012.
  15. ^ a b c "'Anti-Al Jazeera' channel Al Mayadeen goes on air". France 24. 12 June 2012. Retrieved 6 July 2012.
  16. ^ "Press release. Al Mayadeen TV on Eutelsat satellites". (in French). 13 December 2023. Retrieved 17 December 2023.
  17. ^ "French satellite giant accused of broadcasting 'mouthpiece of Hezbollah'". The Telegraph. 16 December 2023. Retrieved 17 December 2023.
  18. ^ "Nega la Shoah e plaude al terrore: inchiesta su Al Mayadeen, tv che opera dall'Italia". La Repubblica (in Italian). 15 December 2023. Retrieved 17 December 2023.
  19. ^ "The world's most influential Arabs". Arabian Business. 2011. Archived from the original on 23 July 2013. Retrieved 11 June 2012.
  20. ^ Thomas Rid; Marc Hecker (2009). War 2.0: Irregular Warfare in the Information Age: Irregular Warfare in the Information Age. Westport, CT; London: Praeger. p. 153. ISBN 978-0-313-36471-6.
  21. ^ "Ex-Al Jazeera anchor to be ministry spokesperson". Gulf News. 11 December 2012. Retrieved 26 March 2013.
  22. ^ Zeina al Abdelhady (2 June 2012). "Lebanese poet Zahi Wehbe shares his passion for poetry". Al Shorfa. Archived from the original on 5 October 2013. Retrieved 9 March 2013.
  23. ^ Patrick Kingsley (28 August 2012). "The TV stations where George Galloway and Julian Assange are stars". The Guardian. Retrieved 15 October 2023.
  24. ^ "Galloway Doubles Pay Packet With Appearances On Russia, Arab Channels". HuffPost UK. 11 July 2014. Retrieved 14 March 2022.
  25. ^ Kaleem Aftab (27 July 2016). "George Galloway on his documentary film The Killing$ of Tony Blair: 'It's a considered narrative, not an angry tirade'". The Independent. Retrieved 14 March 2022.
  26. ^ Nico Hines (14 April 2017). "British MP George Galloway Loves to Hate the USA". The Daily Beast. Retrieved 14 March 2022.
  27. ^ a b Nazeer Rida (14 April 2014). "Al Mayadeen channel withdraws Damascus correspondent". Asharq Al-Awsat. Archived from the original on 3 April 2015. Retrieved 11 January 2015.
  28. ^ "Syrian journalist killed covering fighting - Al Mayadeen TV". Reuters. 9 March 2014.
  29. ^ "Israeli strikes on Lebanon kill eight including journalists and Hamas official". The Guardian. 21 November 2023. Retrieved 22 November 2023.
  30. ^ a b "Al Mayadeen TV: An Alternative against the Mass Media Power". Radio Rebelde. 3 October 2013. Archived from the original on 4 October 2013. Retrieved 3 October 2013.
  31. ^ "British MP yells, "You make me sick!" at anti-Assad audience member on Islamist linked TV". The Commentator. 2 September 2012. Archived from the original on 5 September 2012. Retrieved 15 September 2013.
  32. ^ a b c Jonathan Sacerdoti (4 August 2022). "Jeremy Corbyn 'must be expelled from Labour' for appearing on extremist TV channel say campaigners". The Jewish Chronicle. Retrieved 23 September 2022. Antisemitism campaigners have called on Labour to expel Jeremy Corbyn after he appeared on a TV channel that has given a platform to Hezbollah and published Holocaust denial material.
  33. ^ Husam Itani (22 June 2012). ""Mayadeen," the End". Al Hayat. Archived from the original on 17 December 2013. Retrieved 9 March 2013.
  34. ^ Malik Al Abdeh (October 2012). "The Media War in Syria" (PDF). The Majalla. 1576: 18–22. Archived from the original (PDF) on 30 July 2013.
  35. ^ "Al-Mayadeen: la chaîne anti Al-Jazeera dans le monde arabe". Le Figaro (in French). 27 September 2011. Retrieved 23 September 2022.
  36. ^ Kevin Collier (25 September 2013). "Syrian Electronic Army to make first TV appearance Thursday". The Daily Dot. Retrieved 23 September 2022.
  37. ^ Barak Bouks (2021). "Conflict Coverage by Terror Movements' use of Mass Media and New Media – the case of Irani Proxies: Hamas, Hezboallah and the Hutis". National Security and the Future. 22 (3): 64. doi:10.37458/nstf.22.3.4. S2CID 245443130.
  38. ^ Helle Malmvig (2019). "Allow me this one time to speak as a Shi'i: The sectarian taboo, music videos and the securitization of sectarian identity politics in Hezbollah's legitimation of its military involvement in Syria". Mediterranean Politics. 26 (1): 1–24. doi:10.1080/13629395.2019.1666230. S2CID 211356464.
  39. ^ a b Aaron Bandler (5 August 2022). "Corbyn Appears on Pro-Hezbollah Channel, Decries "Powerful Forces" Against Him". Jewish Journal. Retrieved 23 September 2022. Former Labour Party Leader Jeremy Corbyn appeared on Al Mayadeen on July 30––a network that is reportedly supportive of Hamas, Hezbollah and the Iranian regime––where he decried the "powerful forces" that were against him during his reign as Labour Party leader.
  40. ^ Daniel Guffe; Chloe Simon (2 November 2021). "Fringe right-wing media and conspiracy theorists spread antisemitic disinformation about the Pandora Papers". Media Matters for America. Retrieved 14 March 2022.
  41. ^ Nicholas Noe; Walid Raad (28 September 2012). "Is a New Boss a New Line for Al Jazeera?". Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved 12 June 2012.
  42. ^ "Russia defeat in Ukraine may influence Iran proxies war on Israel". The Jerusalem Post. 15 September 2022. Retrieved 23 September 2022. Al Mayadeen, a media channel considered pro-Iran and close to Hezbollah, reported last week on the Russian setbacks in eastern Ukraine. The article said Russian sources had discussed these setbacks with the Al-Mayadeen reporters.
  43. ^ Chris York (3 August 2022). "What Ukrainians Think About Jeremy Corbyn's Ukraine Interview". Byline Times. Archived from the original on 3 August 2022. Retrieved 4 August 2022.
  44. ^ Al Kadri, Janna (7 October 2022). "Iranian Hijab: Working-class symbol in an anti-imperialist class war". Al Mayadeen. Retrieved 12 October 2022.

External links[edit]