Alhurra and Radio Sawa provided thorough coverage of the Saudi municipal elections on Dec. 12, 2015. These were the Kingdom’s first ever nationwide elections in which women were able to stand for office and vote. There were 978 female candidates and 5,938 male candidates vying for 2,106 seats on 284 councils whose powers are restricted to local affairs. The pledge to allow women to vote and run was made by the late King Abdullah following the 2011 Arab Spring political upheaval in the region.
When news of the death of Saudi King Abdullah was announced, Alhurra Television and Radio Sawa were one of the first networks to report on it, pre-empting regular programming to bring breaking news coverage to the region. Both networks provided extensive analysis of King Salman’s impact on Saudi domestic issues, as well as international relations in the region and with the U.S.