Al Jazeera has launched new content on Instagram after its Snapchat service was banned in blockading nations.
In a move widely considered to be a violation of media freedom, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Bahrain pressured Snapchat to block Al Jazeera’s “Discover” service in their countries.
Along with Egypt, the Gulf states severed ties with Qatar in June after accusing it of financing terrorism. Qatar has strongly denied these claims.
The Saudi-led block has also demanded that Qatar shut down Al Jazeera Media Network, but Doha has steadfastly refused.
Al Jazeera’s acting Director-General Mostefa Souag said it is “surprising that governments and global technology companies believe they can block access to media content and news material in today’s open information sphere”.
“We will not be deterred and will continue to produce and provide professional media content to Arab youth through various social media platforms,” Souag added.
The new Instagram content is aimed at providing dedicated, creative, and captivating information to Arab youth.
Yaser Bishr, Al Jazeera’s executive director of digital, said the new content is specifically produced to take into account the interaction and speed of access to information and current news.
“This comes as part of Al Jazeera’s digital transformation strategy to reach users on all available platforms,” Bishr said. “And to prove to the world that press freedom and access to information are basic rights, which regimes cannot take away as they did in the past.”
Al Jazeera’s followers on Instagram stand at 1.6 million.
Worldwide, Instagram has 700 million active users, and 400 million of them use the platform’s stories feature.
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Source: Al Jazeera News