Al Jazeera Media Network celebrated its 20th anniversary on Tuesday November 1st, under the slogan “A Steadfast Mission with a Forward Looking Vision”. HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, HH the Father Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa and HH Sheikha Moza bint Nasser attended the event.
HH the Father Emir gave a speech to mark the occasion, saying that today was a good opportunity to reflect with pride on the result of these twenty years, stressing that Al Jazeera marked the birth of the greatest Arab Media outlet yet which allows people of the region to see the world from their perspective.
HH the Father Emir praised the network’s credibility and commitment to tell the truth since its inception. Al Jazeera had many achievements to its credit over the past two decades, HH the Father Emir said. One of them was that it freed Arab viewers from relying on foreign media. His Highness said that the network proved to Arab people that they can rely on an Arab network that offers all opinions in a balanced manner. To this day, His Highness added, Al Jazeera remains committed to the truth and the aspirations of the Arab people for freedom and dignity.
Sheikh Hamad bin Thamer Al Thani, chairman of the board of Al Jazeera Media Network, said in his speech that Al Jazeera has been reflecting "people's hopes, revealed their pains and expressed their ambitions".
"For 20 years, Al Jazeera stood by the side of people all over the world. It defended their right to knowledge and freedom of expression," he said.
He added that some Arab ambassadors deliver their official negative message to him then tell him informally after the official meeting is over that they believe what Al Jazeera reported about their countries, yet they have to do their job in delivering the message.
Sheikh Hammad bin Thamer Al Thani revealed during his speech about the so-to-launch two websites in Mandarin and Malay languages; in addition to two new digital platforms: Sdeem and Athir.
Dr. Mostefa Souag, A/Director General of Al Jazeera Media Network praised the efforts exerted and sacrifices made by Al Jazeera staff saying that they are who made Al Jazeera a world-class media network. Dr. Souag reviewed the most prominent achievements accomplished by the various channels and divisions of the network.
Yaser Abu Hilala, Managing Director of Al Jazeera Arabic said in his speech that Al Jazeera has been shining over the past two decades. He pointed out that Al Jazeera will keep calling things by their right name; the occupying forces will be called as such; a revolution and a coup d'etat will also be called what they are.
A number of political figures, intellectuals and media personalities attended the meeting along with presidents and CEO’s of international media and technological firms and corporations; in addition to the network’s officials, correspondents, international Al Jazeera Bureaus’ chiefs and employees.
The celebration started off with a short film about Al Jazeera’s history and progress over the past two decades. Special appreciation was made to the employees who have completed 20 years of employment. A previous celebration was held in the morning for the employees have completed five years working for Al Jazeera.