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Shareholders’ 'rift' stops Saudi newspaper

By Staff

A key Saudi Arabic language daily stopped its operations this week after a rift between the shareholders, denying financial trouble was behind the move.

Shams, which was launched in 2005 as an online paper before going to the print, said it stopped appearing from last Wednesday after the failure of efforts to tackle a dispute among shareholders.

“I regret this decision,” its chairman Prince Turku bin Faisal said in a statement. “We have used up all efforts to ensure the continuation of the newspaper but the circumstances were stronger.”

He said the shareholders decided to shut the daily although it recorded its best performance in 2011. He did not elaborate on the rift.

Saudi Arabia, the world’s oil powerhouse, has the largest number of newspapers in the Gulf, with more than 50 operating on daily basis. Many of them are online papers, which are steadily gaining ground in the country with a population of around 27 million.