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MBC Bans Turkish Soap Operas

The popular network has found itself in its own real-life drama after receiving orders from an 'unnamed authority'.

On Monday, the popular Saudi-owned cable network MBC announced an indefinite halt on the broadcast of Turkish drama productions amidst rising political tension between Turkey and key Arab countries, namely Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Egypt, Masrawy reports.

Mazen Hayek, the spokesman of MBC Group, revealed in a statement that the decision was made after receiving orders from an unnamed authority, according to Reuters, further explaining that a number of the region's prominent networks will follow suit.

"This is not a business decision nor is it a commercial one," explains Hayek. "The decision could constitute a good opportunity for Arab production companies to create more high quality drama content to fill in the gap."

Famed Egyptian TV host, Amr Adeeb, applauded the decision on his Kol Yom talk show on Tuesday night, calling on Egyptian cable networks to enact similar measures on the basis of the political tension between Egypt and Turkey. 

Turkish dramas rose to prominence in the Arab world following the massive success of the Turkish production Nour, which was broadcast on MBC4 from 2005 to 2008, after which Turkish productions became a fixture on most Arabic cable networks.

But it's not all bad news. You can find a whole host of Turkish dramas on Shahid. Well, for now that is. Who knows what else this unnamed authority has planned.


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