Al Jazeera banned from NYSE floor
NEW YORK-25-03-2003-The Arab television network al
Jazeera said two of its reporters covering the New York Stock Exchange have had
their credentials revoked because of the station's coverage of the war in Iraq.
But NYSE spokesman Ray Pellechia denied the station's
war coverage was the cause.
Citing "security reasons," he said the
exchange had chosen to limit the number of broadcasters working at the lower Manhattan
exchange since the war began, giving access only to networks that focus
"on responsible business coverage."
Al Jazeera said it got a letter from the exchange
saying the number of accredited TV stations needed to be reduced. It said its
reporters Ammar al-Sankari and Ramzi Shiber had had their credentials
The network said the reason was "al Jazeera's
coverage of the war on Iraq."
It said it has covered the New York Stock Exchange for
years and believes it is the only channel affected by the new curbs.
Pellechia said other broadcasters had been refused
accreditation or permission to increase their staff, but he declined to give
military officials on Sunday criticized al Jazeera for carrying Iraqi TV
footage of U.S.
prisoners of war.
Al Jazeera is based in the Persian Gulf
state of Qatar,
which also hosts the U.S.
military's Central Command for the region. The station has gained a reputation
as an unusually independent voice in a region where many news media are
Ghazi Khankan of the Council on American-Islamic
Relations decried the move, saying al Jazeera "is really one of the very
few independent Arab media, and to cut them off is a loss to the stock
He said he understood the sensitivity of the footage
captives, "but I don't think this is the right thing to do in spite of the