SAT-MidEast 98.01.09

A news release from Cairo, Egypt, located at 30.3 North - 31.15 East,
sponsored by TELE-SATELLITE INTERNATIONAL, Europes Satellite Magazine
- Events and News interesting to the Middle Eastern SAT-viewer
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-- Launch Information
-- Editorials
-- Transponder Info
-- Bits & Pieces
-- SAT-MidEast Intern

LAUNCH INFORMATION, http://www.satcodx.com/launches.shtml
Launch date for Ariane V108 with Insat 2E and NileSat 101: 21 April.

The launch of Hot Bird 5 with Ariane L503 will not take place before

Yamal 101 will be located at 75.0 East, launched 2nd half of 1998
Yamal 200 will be located at 19.5 West, launched 2nd half of 1998

The launch of Gorizont 33 with Proton which was scheduled for 7 January
is postponed!

Updated launch dates for some Atlas launches: (previous dates in
98/03/03: Intelsat 806 (98/03/16)
98/05/12: Eutelsat W1  (98/04/30)
98/06/12: Intelsat 805 (98/06/04)

Canal France International (CFI) has sued France Télécom over a small
technical glitch that nonetheless led to CFI's TV channel being kicked
from Arabsat.
It has to be said that in bewteen CFI has won the case and was awarded a
high sum of money, although only a quarter of what was initially in

The Lebanese government does not want to have the rest of the world see
what's going on in its country. Consequently, it has banned all
commercial broadcasters from putting their news programmes on satellite.
The ban does not effect terrestrial broadcasts.

Minister of Information Bassem al-Sabaa told reporters after a cabinet
meeting the government "decided to ban private television from
broadcasting news bulletins and political programmes on satellite and
this right would be given only to the state-run television. The private
television will have the choice to broadcast on the satellite the news
bulletin of state-run television," i. e. the official channel
Tele-Liban, whose capacity will be boosted to enable it to handle
satellite broadcasts.

Only two private television stations out of five with licences for local
broadcasts have permission for satellite broadcasting, and both are more
or less of a political nature: Future Television, owned by billionaire
prime minister Rafik al-Hariri who actually requested the ban; and
Lebanese Broadcasting Corporation International (LBCI,) established by
former right-wing Christian Lebanese Forces militia.

This political nature of Lebanese TV stations is not exactly a surprise
as they were established by militia leaders during the 1975-1990 civil
war and later transformed into commercial enterprises. The three
non-satellite channels are the National Bradcasting Network (NBN, close
to House Speaker Nabih Berri), Murr TV (MTV, owned by the brother of
Interior Minister Michel Murr) and the Iranian-backed Hezbollah's
al-Manar TV.

Parliament speaker Nabih Berri told reporters after the cabinet meeting
that politicians should give up their media interests: "Solving problems
in the media starts with the leaders and politicians' giving up of their
shares in the media." It is unclear whether this also applies to the
Lebanese prime minister.

He actually requested the ban because of several recent broadcasts
"which posed problems by tarnishing the image of Lebanon abroad and
harming its economic interests." As it is unlikely he was referring to
his own channel, the target of the action probably is LBC-International,
which reportedly has the highest viewership in the Lebanon and the Arab
Gulf states among commercial Arab television channels.

An earlier decision by the Lebanese government to impose censorship on
programs judged to be political was challenged by LBC-Interntional and
struck down by the State Council, which said it was incompatible with
freedom of information.      

 Copyright 1997 by Sat-ND

On January 5, the Israeli Parliament has approved the new budget law for
the year 1998, which includes an amendment to the Telecommunications
Law, concerning the provision to subscribers of Television broadcasting
through satellite. Not everyone is pleased, though.

Matav-Cable Systems Media Ltd., a leading operator and provider of
broadband Cable TV services in Israel, said that if and when television
broadcasting through satellite takes place, it will form a possible
competition that may adversely affect the company's operations.

The new law is not yet published, and the company said in a press
release it has not received the final version of such law. At this
stage, Matav was unable to estimate when satellite broadcasts will begin
and what the range of operation of such broadcasting will be. It
stressed, however, that it will take legal action in order to protect
its rights.

As one of five cable TV operators in Israel, Matav operates in exclusive
franchise areas which cover approximately 25 percent of Israel's

 Copyright 1997 by Sat-ND
ASIASAT 2, 100.5 East, http://www.satcodx.com/asia2.shtml
ZakSat is the provider of the digital package on 3.940 GHz, V.
A home page can be found at http://www.zak-sat.net/

PANAMSAT 4, 68.5 East, http://www.satcodx.com/pas4.shtml
All transponders used for ISkyB have been powered down and the service
is suspended.

TFC - The Fillipino Channel - from the Philippines has started in the
Multichoice MPEG-2 package on 3.743 GHz, H, PIDs 04EC{1260}/04C4{1220}.

The "Channel Six" test card on 067C{1660}/0654{1620} is in clear.

INTELSAT 703, 57 East, http://www.satcodx.com/i703.shtml
VYVX feeds are seen on 4.095 GHz, R, MPEG-2/encrypted, global beam.

INTELSAT 804, 64 East, http://www.satcodx.com/i804.shtml
During the test period on 44 East very strong tests carriers could be
observed on 10.980 GHz, H & V, 10.993 GHz, H & V, and 12.702 GHz, V.

TURKSAT 1B, 31 East, http://www.satcodx.com/turk1b.shtml
Occasional feeds have been observed on 11.123 GHz, H, PAL, Turkish beam.

ARABSAT 2A, 26 East, http://www.satcodx.com/arab2a.shtml
Radio Oman is on 4.140 GHz, L, on an audio subcarrier at 7.20 MHz.

EUTELSAT II-f3, 16 East, http://www.satcodx.com/e2f3.shtml
TMF - The Music Factory - will leave 11.024 GHz, H, on May 1st and will
as of that date only be transmitting from Astra 1F.

Dutch commercial broadcaster tvNL will start digital test transmissions
in SCPC in February, and take-up regular transmissions before 1 April.
Frequency and parameters yet unknown.

HOT BIRD 1, 13 East, http://www.satcodx.com/hb1.shtml
Polish Nasza TV (in English: Our TV) has started promos on 11.414 GHz,
H, in MPEG-2/clear, SR 6110, FEC 3/4, PIDs 0021{33}/0022{34}.
They will start regular transmissions as of January 17.

Wereldomroep TV on 11.283 GHz, V, has been renamed to "BVN TV" - (het)
Beste Van Nederland TeleVisie. This will however change again soon.
After the official start of the Flamish participation to the programming
contents it will be "BVN TV": [het] Beste [van] Vlaamse [en] Nederlandse

It seems quite complicated, but life isn't that easy, isn't it ?

Due to the audio problems for Thai TV 5 Global Network on 11.248 GHz, H,
it has temporarily shut down. It should be back at 12:00 CAT on January

HOT BIRD 2, 13 East, http://www.satcodx.com/hb2.shtml
Satisfaction Channel TV will be back on 11.977 GHz, H, the second week
in January.
(SATCO-DX, source: on-screen message)

Ecclesia (now Sat 2000) feeds are observed on 11.804 GHz, V,
MPEG-2/clear, PIDs 0208{520}/0292{658}.

CEI on 11.996 GHz, V is only transmitting promos.

An Italian version of EuroSport will start on 12.034 GHz, V, in the D+
package at the end of January.

TMC and TMC 2 on 11.958 GHz, V, (D+) were recently in clear for about a
month due to a technical fault. There are currently no plans to
broadcast them in clear again.

HOT BIRD 3, 13 East, http://www.satcodx.com/hb3.shtml
Before the end of the January, another four TV channels will start in
the TeleSpazio digital package on 12.111 GHz, V. whereby the FEC will
change to 2/3.

The encrypted test card/transmission from Greek MAD TV on 12.169 GHz, H,
has changed PIDs to 0206{518}/02C6{710}.

SIRIUS 2, 5 East, http://www.satcodx.com/sirius2.shtml
SVT Europa on 12,380 H tested their encryption in Viaccess from this
week. Regular encryption will start on 12/01/98.

AMOS 1, 4 West, http://www.satcodx.com/amos1.shtml
Ofek on the Israeli beam at 11.094 GHz, V, has changed its SR to 3600.

EXPRESS 2, 14 West, http://www.satcodx.com/e2.shtml
At 11:00 CAT, RTP Africa started on 3.840 GHz, R, MPEG-2/clear, SR 6000,
FEC 3/4. The programming is mostly the same as RTP Internacional, but
with different logotypes and some localized specials.

INTELSAT 705, 18 West, http://www.satcodx.com/i705.shtml
Prima TV (Romania) has started on 10.978 GHz, H, MPEG-2/clear, SR 6000,
FEC 3/4.

INTELSAT 515, 21.5 West, http://www.satcodx.com/i803.shtml
EDTV - Emirates Dubai TV left 3.915 GHz, L while Intelsat 515 still was
here. They have probably just been testing.

Best regards,

Henk C. Room / Sat-MidEast / Cairo - Egypt
- SAT-MidEast maintains a web site with relevant Middle Eastern
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- archive of observations, features & news for the Middle East. 

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