Monday, August 20, 2007
Sheikh-up? Al-Jazeera accountants jailed
Pity the Al Jazeera English language field correspondents. Those on-air smiles look a little tight lately in Kuala Lumpur, London and Washington, DC;
It's not only because the splendid archive footage has all been run through and it's time to get more features in the can for the 24/7 feed. Apparently, foreign correspondents have griped that, in the scramble of obtaining all that new shooting, stacks of their monthly expenses were left unreimbursed. So it's not all non-stop glamour in tv news. Complaints fell on deaf ears at the Qatar-based television station for months. Finally it was revealed that most of the no-account accountants had been tossed in jail. Since broadcasts are not aired inside Qatar, at the insistence of Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, the money freeze had stayed a mystery. An inside source now tells Feral Beast that the Al-J's "liquidity problems" are getting sorted.