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Israel-Arab business deal

Israeli millionaire to purchase 50% of Al-Jazeera shares

Israeli businessman Haim Shiban intends to acquire 50% of shares of Qatar-based satellite TV channel Al-Jazeera. The channel has gained reputation after the September 11 attack in the US; it has become one of the world's leading channels providing coverage of the latest news of the Arab world. The information has been reported Saturday by a Lebanese newspaper Al-Mustakbal with reference to Israeli sources.

According to the Lebanese newspaper, for the last several months, the Israeli businessman has been having talks with the channel's owner Sheikh Khamad ben Khalifa al Tani regarding this matter.

The offer has first been made to emir about six months ago during his visit to Qatar along with American ex-president Bill Clinton. The newspaper reports that emir took the offer seriously. Both men began negotiating. However, their talks ended after emir decided to audit the channel.

According to the newspaper, Shiban has purchased a portion of American company Fox for $1.5 billion USD. In addition, last year he's become a shareholder of a German company Bru Sat 1 for 225 million Euro. He also owns 23% of shares of second Israel's channel, reports RIA “Novosti”.

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