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Last Updated: Monday, 25 October, 2004, 14:46 GMT 15:46 UK
Arabic Taleban TV soap cut short
Taleban TV show
The drama featured Arab fighters in Afghanistan
An Arabic-language TV soap opera set in Taleban-era Afghanistan has been taken off the airwaves amid legal wrangling and threats from Islamist militants.

Two Arab TV networks have stopped screening the show mid-series, accusing its makers of failing to supply them with the remaining episodes.

An Islamist website had threatened violence against anyone involved in the multi-million dollar series.

Viewers have been left wondering how the series, the Road to Kabul, ends.

The Middle East Broadcasting Centre (MBC), a Saudi Arabian-funded TV network, said the show's producer and distributor had "breached their commitment to deliver all the episodes before the date set for broadcasting".

Orbit TV, another Saudi-owned network that had been screening the show, said it too had not received the remaining episodes and would seek compensation for "the damage incurred by the network".

The Qatar-based TV company that helped make the series said work on it had stopped because of technical problems, according to MBC.

Afghan history

The Qatari company and its Jordanian partner have both denied they were responding to threats against the show.

A website linked to militant causes earlier said anyone linked to the show would be a target for attack if the series in any way slandered the former Taleban rulers of Afghanistan.

The Road to Kabul was shot in Jordan, England and Pakistan and followed the story of an Afghan woman who falls in love with an Arab man while living in England.

Audiences watched her return to Afghanistan, which was under Soviet occupation at the time.

Further episodes in the series would reportedly have covered the rise of the hardline Taleban militia and the growing involvement of Arab fighters alongside them.




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