Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

No strategy and a beige suit

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014

Read more

ENCORE!

Alain Choquette: A Hilarious Magician in Paris

Read more

FOCUS

France welcomes Iraqi Christian refugees

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Emmanuel Macron: A new economy minister with a pro-business agenda

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

More of this year's best Observers stories

Read more

#TECH 24

Changing the world, one video game at a time

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Socialist Party summer conference kicks off in explosive atmosphere

Read more

  • Exclusive: Fabius warns of further sanctions against Russia

    Read more

  • Experimental Ebola drug ‘ZMapp’ heals all monkeys in study

    Read more

  • IMF stands behind Lagarde amid French corruption probe

    Read more

  • Ukraine to relaunch NATO membership bid

    Read more

  • Suriname leader’s son pleads guilty to courting Hezbollah

    Read more

  • British killer escapes from French psychiatric hospital

    Read more

  • Chelsea’s Torres set for AC Milan switch

    Read more

  • Police hunt for British boy with brain tumour taken to France

    Read more

  • France shines in IMF list of world’s promising economists

    Read more

  • Mapping Ukraine: Canada and Russia in ‘tweet for tat’ row

    Read more

  • First case of Ebola confirmed in Senegal

    Read more

  • Obama has 'no strategy yet' on potential Syria strikes

    Read more

  • Netflix to woo French with ‘House of Cards’ set in Marseille

    Read more

  • French businesses ‘hoping for a new Thatcher’

    Read more

  • Syrian refugees surpass 3 million, UN says

    Read more

  • West backs Ukrainian claims of Russian incursion

    Read more

  • Libyan PM resigns as Islamists set up rival administration

    Read more

  • UN says 43 peacekeepers captured in Golan Heights

    Read more

  • The deleted tweets of Manuel Valls

    Read more

  • Peru seizes record 6.5 tonnes of Europe-bound cocaine

    Read more

Al Arabiya's website hacked by 'Shia'

Latest update : 2008-10-13

The website of the pan-Arabic channel Al Arabiya was hacked Friday. Hackers threatened to shut down all Sunni websites if "attacks against Shia sites continue". The arabic television channel created a temporary website.

"If attacks on Shia websites continue, none of your own websites will be safe."

 

The warning message was posted on the homepage of Al Arabiya Television’s internet site on Friday.

 

Computer hackers claiming to be Shia wrote the message in both Arabic and English across the main page and blocked access to the site. The page also displayed a picture of an Israeli flag on fire. The site was later shut down.


After the cyber attack, Al Arabiya issued a statement saying that it would continue to be “moderate, balanced and objective” when covering news. The attack is not the first of the kind, Al Arabiya added.

 

Several similar incidents targeted Sunni and Shia websites over the past few weeks. Iran’s Fars news agency reported last month that Sunni hackers had attacked 300 Shiite websites, including Shia Islam’s most popular site linked to Iraq-based spiritual leader, grand ayatollah Ali Sistani.


The Sunni-Shia schism appeared soon after Prophet Mohammad died and a succession war ensued. While the majority of Muslims in the Arab world are Sunni, Iran presents itself as the protector of Shias in the region. Tensions between both communities have been aggravated by the conflict between Sunnis and Shias in Iraq.


Al Arabiya assures it has remained neutral in the dispute, interviewing people from both sides.


The Dubai-based station said in its statement that it had been bitterly criticized for airing an interview with prominent Sunni commentator Sheikh Yusuf al Qaradawi, who claimed that Shia were “invading” Sunni societies, following an Iranian plan. His attacks were endorsed by a number of Sunni religious leaders and on several websites.


“If the US doesn’t invade Iran and the latter develops the nuclear weapon, this would be a catastrophe for Sunni societies,” said the site hespress.com.


Others argue that Qaradawi has strengthened his attacks on Shias following his son’s alleged conversion to Shiism. The report was denied by the commentator.


Shiite imam Fadl Allah Nasm-Eddine, director of the Paris-based Shia Islamic Center, criticized the cyber attack again Al Arabiya’s website and told FRANCE 24  that the station was “neutral and respectable."


“I don’t think that the hackers are Shias but I think some people do criticize the station’s programmes which are often favourable to Gulf countries”, which are mainly Sunni. Moreover, the station is partly owned by Saudis. “It’s a news station. It should be allowed to function,” he added.


The imam called on Sheikh Qaradawi to “improve his methods” in order to end the tensions since “every escalation is a threat for both Sunnis and Shias.”  
 
  

Date created : 2008-10-11

COMMENT(S)