Al Jazeera hits out against Algerian and Egyptian state broadcasters

Pay-television broadcaster Al Jazeera has threatened to sue the state broadcasters of Algeria and Egypt, ENTV and Egyptian Television Network, after they showed this week’s 2014 Fifa World Cup qualifiers featuring the two countries.

In first-leg games in the African region’s World Cup qualifying play-offs Algeria lost 3-2 in Burkina Faso on Saturday while Egypt suffered a heavy 6-1 defeat in Ghana on Tuesday.

Al Jazeera said that it owned the rights to both games and added that the two broadcasters had violated his company’s agreement with the Confederation of African Football governing body by showing the matches.

“The administration of the channel will have to sue the Algerian television for putting Algeria's match versus Burkina Faso on the air without paying for the broadcast rights of the match, which were bought by Al-Jazeera from the Confederation of African Football,” director general of Al Jazeera Sports Nasser Al-Khelaifi said, according to the World Bulletin website.

He added: “What the Algerian television did was not acceptable either at the moral or legal level.”

Following Egyptian Television Network’s coverage of Tuesday’s Ghana-Egypt game, Al Jazeera said that it would sue those who had violated its broadcast rights.