RT Arabic


(Learn how and when to remove this template message)
RT Arabic
Broadcast areaEurope, Middle East, North Africa, Africa, South Asia, Asia Pacific, Australia, North America
Picture format1080i HDTV
(downscaled to 16:9 576i for the SDTV feed)
Owner(ANO) TV-Novosti
Sister channelsRT
RT Documentary
RT France
RT en español
RT America
Launched4 May 2007
Mozaic TV (Qatar)Channel 128 (SD)
Eutelsat 7 West A 7.3° West10892 H / 27500 / 5/6
Hot Bird 13C 13° East11013 H / 27500 / 3/4
Badr 4 26° East11996 H / 27500 / 3/4 (SD)
BADR-6 26° East11747 V / 27500 / 3/4 (HD)
Yahsat 1A 52.5° East11977 H / 27500 / 8/9
Yamal 2023740 L / 38000 / 7/8
beINChannel 209
OSN (Middle East and North Africa)Channel 455 (SD)
Freebox TV (France)Channel 698 (SD)
Streaming media
Live streamOn Air (Free)
[1] (Free)

RT Arabic, formerly known as Rusiya Al-Yaum (Arabic: روسيا اليوم, meaning Russia Today[1]) is a Russian state-owned free-to-air television news channel broadcasting in Arabic and headquartered in Moscow, Russia.[2] Rusiya Al-Yaum started broadcasting on 4 May 2007. The parent company of RT Arabic is TV-Novosti, which is an Autonomous Non-Commercial Organization owned by the Russian Federation.

The channel covers a wide variety of events worldwide from the point of view of the Russian government. It also features interviews, debates and stories about cultural life in Russia and major cities.


“Rusiya Al-Yaum” was first conceived in February 2006 following the launch of its English counterpart RT in December 2005. Test broadcasts began on May 4, 2007, with a full launch being made later. By this point, it used satellite to broadcast across the Middle East, North Africa and Europe, with a potential audience of 350 million people. The channel can also be watched on the Internet. As of November 2012, it was available on myTV, an over-the-top technology platform in North and South America.[3]


Previously, when ANO TV-Novosti announced plans to launch an Arabic-language channel, the editor-in-chief's position was taken by Akram Khuzam, who had previously been Al Jazeera's former Moscow Bureau chief. He eventually decided to move back to Syria, leaving Margarita Simonyan, RT editor-in-chief, to be appointed as his successor. In her new post, Margarita Simonyan became responsible for the work of RT's English and Arabic channels. Aidar Aganin was appointed Deputy Editor-in-chief of the Arabic channel.[4]


The channel staff includes Russian and Arab journalists, Russian Arabists and orientalists, overall having more than 500 employees including natives of Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Iraq, Yemen, Lebanon, Mauritania, Morocco, Palestine, Syria, Sudan, Tunisia, Oman and other countries. The channel has correspondents in Lebanon, Palestine, Iraq, Egypt, Israel, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States. The channel also stated in 2007 that it planned to get its own exclusive materials from Syria, Jordan and Iraq in the near future.[5]


  • Panorama—a weekly round-table discussion where various topics are covered. Each episode is 26-minutes in length and focuses on a various topics and their aspects from different or sometimes controversial points of view.
  • Persona—26-minute prime-time programme on Fridays - repeated on Saturdays and Sundays. The programme features guests with specific knowledge, experience and qualifications in political, cultural and other fields - at their workplace, at home, or any other place the guest chooses.
  • Zoom—weekly edition covering current or unusual events, featuring public personalities or ordinary people in extraordinary situations. This is a dynamic 13-minute story during which events unfold in various locations - from the planet's hot-spots to science laboratories and theatres.
  • Weekly Report—26-minute news and analysis programme that covers main political events over the previous seven days airing on Fridays and repeated on Saturdays and Sundays.
  • Press Review—3-minute feature, four times a day, which covers headlines in Russian and foreign press, with special attention paid to Russian-Arab relations.
  • Documentaries—RT Arabic presents a selection of documentaries centered on a variety of topics, including Russian culture and society.

Assessment and reactions

RT Arabic, along with other RT channels, has been subject to criticism for its explicit connections with the Russian government. The parent company of RT, TV-Novosti, is registered as a state-owned ANO. According to figures from the Russian Ministry of Justice, TV-Novosti, the Russian state provides 176.7 billion rubles in financing and 42.3 million rubles in other funding.[6]

On November 9, 2017, RT announced that it had been given a notice deadline to register under the U.S. Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) by the U.S. Justice Department.[7] Although the U.S. Justice Department has never finalized the demand nor made it public, the action has generated a series of reactions from RT and the Russian government. Margarita Simonyan referred to this letter as a "cannibalistic deadline" and argued that this was an attempt to limit RT's functionalities.[8] Top Russian officials have also reiterated their stand with RT on this matter, and have stated that a retaliation was likely to follow on U.S. foreign media.


On 17 May 2015, an RT Arabic journalist was allegedly assaulted by Israeli security forces while filming Jerusalem Day celebrations in Jerusalem.[9] A similar occurrence took place on 9 December 2017.[10]

On 29 January 2020, RT Arabic correspondent Wafa Shabruni was badly injured from an exploded shell during a militants' weapon depot removal in the southeast Syrian province of Idlib.[11] She lost consciousness and was later taken to Hama State Hospital under the care of Russian military medics. RT editor-in-chief Margarita Simonyan personally thanked the medics and the Russian Minister of Defense for their assistance in this matter.[12]

See also


  1. ^ "Началось вещание телеканала "Россия сегодня" на арабском языке". РИА Новости. Retrieved 6 May 2016.
  2. ^ "RT Arabic". RT Arabic (in Arabic). Retrieved 2020-05-19.
  3. ^ "myTV - Channels from home | Channels". Archived from the original on 28 June 2012. Retrieved 6 May 2016.
  4. ^ "Single editor-in-chief for Russia Today". Retrieved 6 May 2016.
  5. ^ "TV Channel "Rusiya Al-Yaum" Takes Part in the Russian-Emirati Business Forum". Retrieved 6 May 2016.
  6. ^ @DFRLab (2018-11-23). "Question That: RT's Military Mission". Medium. Retrieved 2020-05-29.
  7. ^ "Putin Says U.S. Pressure On RT An 'Attack,' Will Get 'Proper Response'". RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty. Retrieved 2020-05-29.
  8. ^ "Washington orders RT America to register as foreign agent by Monday". RT International. Retrieved 2020-05-29.
  9. ^ "Israel/Palestine: See IDF forces ATTACK RT journalist". Ruptly. Retrieved 2020-06-11.
  10. ^ "WATCH as Israeli soldiers attack RT Arabic correspondent". Fort Russ. 2017-12-09. Retrieved 2020-06-11.
  11. ^ "RT Arabic correspondent injured in Syria | tellerreport.com". www.tellerreport.com. Retrieved 2020-06-11.
  12. ^ "Simonyan thanked the Russian military for saving RT Arabic correspondent wounded in Idlib | tellerreport.com". www.tellerreport.com. Retrieved 2020-06-11.

Further reading

  • International Arabic-Language News Channels: Who’s Watching?, Asharq Al-Awsat, UK, 2007
  • Russian satellite news channel launches Arabic service at the Wayback Machine (archived April 29, 2009), Forbes, USA, May 2007

External links

  • Official website (in Arabic)
  • RT Arabic's channel on YouTube (in Arabic)