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TLC Launches Chat Show for Arab Women Across Middle East and North Africa

Bill Clinton, Donna Karan among scheduled guests

Discovery Communications-owned pay network TLC is launching a chat show for Arab women, its first local program for the Middle East, which marks a breakthrough of sorts.

Hosted by Iraqi-American humanitarian, activist and reporter Zainab Salbi, “Nida’a,” which means “the calling” in Arabic, will launch in October across the Middle East and North Africa on TLC, on Dubai-based paybox OSN, the region’s leading pay-TV player.

Salbi, who is the founder and former CEO of Washington-based Women for Women International, has lined up interviews with several notable international and Middle Eastern personalities, including Bill Clinton, fashion designer Donna Karan and Egyptian actress Yusra.

“Nida’a” is being touted as giving Arab women “a voice and platform in a way that has never been done before, as diverse topics such as women’s issues, current events, pop culture, entertainment, food and fashion are all covered in front of a studio audience,” TLC said in a statement.

“The ‘Nida’a’ show aims at inspiring, supporting and empowering young Muslim and Arab women to achieve their full potential in society,” it quoted Salbi as saying.

“It provides high quality entertainment and current affairs content with a fresh, engaging and intelligent tone, reflective of young women in the Middle East today,” she added.

While talk shows targeting women are nothing new in the Middle East, most notably Kalam Nawaem’s “The View” on MBC, “Nida’a” will mark the first one produced by a U.S. media conglomerate.

TLC is the world’s top woman’s pay TV brand with almost 400 million global subscribers.

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