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Al-Jazeera's Set to Launch English News Channel


The satellite television network Al-Jazeera says its long-delayed English-language news channel will begin operations on November 15, at 12 hours, Universal Time.

The network says the new Al-Jazeera International channel will be the first global, English-language news station headquartered in the Middle East.

Al-Jazeera, based in Doha, Qatar, is supported financially by the Qatari royal family. The English channel will broadcast 24 hours daily - 12 hours of live news with another 12 hours for interviews, features and analysis programs.

The network says there are one billion English-speakers in the world, and its research shows that many potential viewers thirst for news from a non-Western perspective.

Al-Jazeera says the English channel will include many broadcasts from and about the Middle East, with all news stories written and reported from an Arab perspective.

The English channel originally was scheduled to begin operations near the beginning of this year, but technical difficulties, licensing issues and other problems delayed the project.

Today's announcement coincides with the 10th anniversary of Al-Jazeera's main Arabic-language station.

The network's director-general says the new channel will provide English-speaking viewers with "the same ground-breaking news and impartial and balanced journalism".

The network expected its new programs will reach out to a new audience that is familiar with the Al-Jazeera name, but is unable to watch or understand Arabic broadcasts.

Al-Jazeera International will have broadcast centers in Kuala Lumpur, London and Washington, as well as Doha.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.
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