Arabic version of BBC radio closes after 85 years due to budget cuts

Archive – BBC logo – Liam Mcburney/PA Wire/dpa

The Arabic radio of the British national broadcaster, the BBC, has ceased broadcasting after 85 years of operation as a result of budget cuts ordered by the London headquarters.

The station began broadcasting in early 1938, as the first foreign-language radio broadcast of the then British Empire News Service, according to the Arab News portal.

«What is happening is beyond grief: I find it incredibly difficult to describe how I feel,» said BBC Egypt correspondent Sally Nabil.

Radio presenter Mahmud Almossalami dismissed the broadcast this Friday with the words «Huna London» (This is London).

The corporation announced cuts of hundreds of jobs in its World Service that it was forced to make due to the government’s order to freeze the license fee it receives.

These cuts will mean the elimination of at least 382 jobs worldwide as part of a «digital transformation» of the broadcaster.