It is interesting to see how the local press covered what happened in the Riyadh International Book Fair. I was really amazed by the way that Al-Riyadh newspaper, a sponsor of this event, dealt with the two panels I attended. Reporting on the first panel, they completely ignored the chaos at the end of it. However, they reported what happened on the second panel with more details, and described those who caused the chaos as “extremists.” Probably this has something to do with the fact that the moderator of the second panel is Turki Al-Saudairi, the editor-in-chief of the newspaper.
Now, some comments on my posts on the panels did not like how I saw what happened. I want to say that I’m not a reporter who is supposed to cover events and let people make their own opinion. What I use the word “extremist” to describe someone, that’s my opinion, and I’m not asking anyone to take my side. If you don’t agree with me, that’s totally ok, and you can have your say in the comments area.
Anyway, I leave you with some more links: Hussein Shubukshi said what happened at these panels is a “shame”. Al-Hayat newspaper, as well as the columnists Abdullah Al-Keaid and Turki Al-Dakheel, also described the people who ruined the event as “extremists.” And Finally, from the infamous Al-Sahat forums, here is the take of one of the sheikhs who talked in the panels, and also the view of another member of Al-Sahat.
* All links in this post are to Arabic pages. I apologize to those who can’t read Arabic.