The Iraqi government plans to launch a telecommunications satellite with the assistance of foreign firms. The satellite, designed to reinforce television and radio broadcasting, will be built under contract with foreign parties, an Iraqi cabinet statement revealed.
The statement, carried by the official INA news agency, did not identify the foreign firms that would be involved in the project. Nor did it specify the expected cost of the satellite or the project’s launch date.
Baghdad, under United Nations sanctions since the year 1990, was one of the first Arab countries to broadcast television and currently operates three terrestrial channels: the official Iraq Television, a movie channel and Youth TV, headed by Uday Saddam Hussein, the president's eldest son.
Although it is officially prohibited to install satellite dishes and receivers in Iraq without permission, the government launched a satellite channel in July 1998, via Egypt's Nilesat.
In October 1999, the Iraqi cabinet passed a bill to set up a television network aimed at receiving and redistributing satellite TV transmissions to Iraqi subscribers and recently the country gained access to subscription-based satellite channels. — (menareport.com)
© 2002 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )