Kuwait has a relatively open media environment in comparison to its Gulf neighbours, and is ranked highest of all the Gulf states in the Reporters Without Borders 2016 World Press Freedom Index. However, its ranking of 103 (out of 179) indicates that Kuwaiti journalists face restrictions on their reporting and that negative portrayals of certain subjects, such as Islam or the ruling family, remain off-limits.
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For centuries Bedouins (badu) have passed through the Qatar Peninsula – a strip of land extending northwards from the Arabian mainland to the Persian Gulf – benefitting from the sparse resources and at the same time maintaining their territorial interests with regard to other families in present-day Qatar, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia.
Hassan II’s funeral in 1999 was attended by a new Jordanian King, a new Emir of Bahrain, a new President of Algeria, and a new Prime Minister of Israel. Shortly afterwards, President Hafiz al-Assad of Syria died and was succeeded by his son, Bashar al-Assad; Mohammed VI was part of a new generation in the Arab states, but twelve years later, that new generation was stumbling through the Arab Spring.
he state-run Broadcasting Service of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (BSKSA) is responsible for all broadcasting. It operates four TV networks, including news channel al-Ekhbariya. The Minister of Culture and Information chairs the body that oversees TV operations. Private TV stations cannot operate from Saudi soil, but the country is a key market for pan-Arab satellite and pay-TV broadcasters. Saudi investors are behind some of these networks, including Dubai-based MBC and Bahrain-based Orbit. Viewers in the east can pick up TV stations from more liberal Gulf neighbours.