Qatari newspaper chief resigns following tweet on Saudi Arabia

Editor Al Harmi leaves Qatari daily Al Sharq after 12 years

Image Credit: Source: Al Sharq
Jaber Al Harmi
Gulf News

Manama: The editor-in-chief of one of Qatar’s top newspapers has resigned, citing personal reasons.

Jaber Al Harmi, who has been at the helm of Al Sharq daily since 2008, presented his resignation late on Sunday.

The resignation came a few days after Al Harmi posted a tweet related to the increase of state employees’ salaries in Qatar that reportedly caused a storm in Gulf countries, particularly Saudi Arabia, Saudi news site Al Marsad reported on Monday.

“Jaber Al Harmi has presented his resignation as editor-in-chief of Al Sharq to Shaikh Thani Bin Abdullah Al Thani, the chairman of Al Sharq board, after 12 years with the newspaper as a Deputy Editor in Chief and then as Editor in Chief since 2008,” the daily said.

In his tweet in Arabic, Al Harmi, 47, welcomed the decision to increase salaries in the public sector by Emir Shaikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani.

“Some countries have reduced the salaries of their citizens, while Qatar announced an increase in the salaries of its citizens. This is first and foremost a grace and a blessing from God. The leadership has consecrated the wealth of the country to its citizens.”

The tweet was seen on social media as scorning the austerity measures recently taken by Saudi Arabia and which included reducing the salaries of some public sector employees, including ministers.

Al Harmi in 2002 became the first Qatari national to be appointed the editor of a Qatari newspaper, Al Watan.

He moved to Al Sharq in 2004 as deputy editor in chief before becoming its editor in chief.

He was named among the 100 most influential Arab people in 2009, becoming the first Qatari media figure to join the list compiled by Arabian Business.

He conducted mainly political interviews with several heads of state and government.

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