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Al-Jazeera Begins English Broadcasts

The newsroom of Al-Jazeera's English-language channel in Doha (AFP) November 15, 2006 -- The Arabic-language television station Al-Jazeera is today launching a new English-language channel.

Al-Jazeera English, as the channel is called, is due to start broadcasting this afternoon from Al-Jazeera's studios in Doha, Qatar.

Al-Jazeera says the English-language channel will seek to reach a potential audience of 80 million cable and satellite viewers, mostly in Asia, Africa, and Europe, in a challenge to international broadcasters CNN and the BBC.

"We are going to push boundaries in many continents in the world because of our resources around the world," Al-Jazeera English London bureau chief Sue Phillip told Reuters on November 13. "We have phenomenal resources already in place with many bureaus, smaller bureaus, that we have opened, and we want to try to get back to grassroots level. We want to report not only in Africa, for example, negative stories. We want to report the positive stories. We want to go to places that other organizations don't go to or, if they do, they only visit sporadically."

The new channel will not be available on cable in the United States.

(Reuters, AFP,