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Dahlan visit raises concerns about foreign control over Egyptian media

The recent visit of Mohammed Dahlan to Egypt has sparked controversy about his role as head of a UAE channel which is funding Egyptian media outlets with the intention to control and influence them. The disgraced ex-Fatah "strongman" has been a frequent guest in the Egyptian media due to his apparent huge investment projects in media projects which support the current regime in Cairo.

Reports have emerged recently which suggest that the UAE is channelling new funding to the Egyptian media in an effort to counter Saudi influence. According to well-known columnist Wael Abdel Fattah writing in Al-Tahrir newspaper, the Emirates government has pumped nearly $1 billion into the Egyptian media through Dahlan in order to control it and strengthen its role in supporting the army's agenda.

Saudi Arabia, claimed Abdel Fattah, has given the same amount to Egypt through Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman in a bid to control what he described as the Egyptian "mind, perceptions and ways of life". Such competition, he added, is part of a silent cold war between Riyadh and Abu Dhabi to extend their influence in the Arab region.

Meanwhile, Egyptian TV presenter Syed Ali criticised Dahlan's visit to Egypt. "He does not have any political status to be received in this way," he claimed on Monday. "Newsweek said that Dahlan is mediating peace between Egypt and Ethiopia, which was denied by the Egyptian foreign ministry, so someone must explain the purpose of his visit to Egypt."

Hundreds of activists expressed anger at Dahlan's visit to Cairo, which included holding a seminar at Al-Youm Al-Sabee newspaper. The protesters argued that Dahlan does not represent the Palestinian people or their cause. "He brings ruin to every country he visits and intervenes in their policies like he did in Libya through his arms dealing," said one, who asked to remain anonymous.

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Middle EastNewsPalestineUAE
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