Television

Russia gets its first Muslim TV channel

MUMBAI: Coinciding with the occasion of Eid-ul-Fitr, Russia saw the launch of its first ever public TV channel for Muslims, broadcasting 24x7 in the Russian language on Sunday.

The channel is called Al RTV and is funded primarily by the support of the private sector.

The channel‘s chief editor is Rustam Arifdzhanov who is also the vice president of the Eurasian Academy of Television and Radio Broadcasting.

Founded by three ethnic Muslims, the channel aims to raise awareness and understanding of Islamic religious traditions and Muslim culture. The channel covers eight Russian regions Republics of Bashkortostan and Tatarstan and six in the North Caucasus territory.

"Al RTV is not state-funded, it‘s an answer to hopes and needs of the believers, our country‘s Muslims," Russian Muslim‘s Religious Directorate for European Regions deputy chairman Damir Mukhetdinov told Voice of Russia.

He further told the media that in his knowledge all the leading Islamic states of the Persian Gulf, Iran and Turkey have expressed a huge interest in the project. He said he is confident that when people realise that the channel features a positive outlook and is not serving the interests of separate Islamic groups or movements but has a humanistic and educating angle, there would be no problems with financing whatsoever.

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