Alhurra Television had the most extensive coverage of the White House Summit on Countering Violent Extremism of any Arabic-language television network. The three days of coverage included live broadcasting with simultaneous translation of remarks made by President Barack Obama, Secretary of State John Kerry, National Security Advisor Susan Rice, and Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson. Alhurra also carried the panel discussion “Understanding Violent Extremism Today” live in its entirety.
Both Alhurra, Radio Sawa and MBN’s digital properties had a team of reporters covering different angles of the Summit. Alhurra’s White House Correspondent profiled each day of the Summit and examined the expectations and the next steps, the network’s Congressional Correspondent reported on the debates about home grown terrorism and the Authorization for Use of Military Forces Against Terrorism, and Alhurra’s Pentagon Correspondent covered military operations against terror groups around the world.
Alhurra’s State Department Correspondent also had interviews with Rashad Hussain, the newly appointed US envoy and coordinator for Strategic Counter-Terrorism Communications; Under Secretary of State for Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights Sarah Sewall; lead Moroccan delegate to the Summit Mbarka Bouaida; Shaarik H. Zafar, Special Representative to Muslim Communities; and Salam Al-Marayati, President of Muslim Public Affairs Council.
The network’s comprehensive coverage also included reports on:
- fighting extremism online,
- education reforms in Egypt to further promote moderation and tolerance,
- coverage of Sen. Al Franken’s (D-MN) remarks that Muslim communities in the U.S. play a pivotal role in the fight against extremism and they should discourage young Americans from joining extremist groups such as ISIL.
- the role of leading Islamists in Turkey to fight extremism.
- the Islamic Civil Society in America’s call that mosques need to be a beacon of guidance for the Muslim youth.
- a profile of the University of Maryland’s Nation Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism panel discussion,
- and from Jordan, a report on civil society’s role in promoting coexistence
Several discussion programs on the network hosted American, Egyptian, Moroccan, and Saudi guests to address how to fight extremism and discuss the outcomes from the Summit. Alhurra’s Al Youm examined a corresponding summit of military figures in the Arab World that is being held in Riyadh to evaluate the effectiveness of the ongoing airstrikes against ISIL. Another report on Al Youm looked at the strategies in place to counter and prevent extremist ideology.
Alhurra.com had updates throughout the Summit on its website and Facebook page. The final wrap-up of the Summit incorporated photos, exclusive interviews by Alhurra and has garnered more than 2000 likes on Facebook.
Radio Sawa also aired the speeches made by President Barack Obama, Sec. John Kerry and National Security Advisor Susan Rice live with translation. The radio network played excerpts of the speeches within their newscasts and had a several reports profiling the conference. One such report, highlighted a forum on the risk of returning foreign fighters in Iraq and Syria to their homelands in the West. Radio Sawa interviewed the Egyptian Foreign Minister about his participation in the Summit, along with the President of the Islamic Public Affairs Council. Sawa Magazine took an in-depth look at what are the next steps for the international communities fight against violent extremism.