Wikileaks' effect: Al-Jazeera drops top executive
DOHA - Al-Jazeera's top executive, Wadah Khanfar, resigned Tuesday after eight years as the head of the satellite news channel, the station announced on its website.
"For some time I have been discussing my desire to step down with the chairman of the board," Khanfar wrote. "He has kindly expressed understanding and has accepted my decision."
"The public probably doubted that Al-Jazeera would fulfill its promise of independent journalism ... We managed to pleasantly surprise them by exceeding all expectations," Khanfar wrote in a two-page farewell to fellow employees.
A replacement for Khanfar has so far not been announced.
Khanfar was appointed managing director in 2003 and was later promoted to director general.
His resignation came amidst a Wikileaks controversy in which the whistle-blowing website leaked a US government cable that suggests the Al-Jazeera executive agreed to alter the content of the channel's website after a US request to do so.
The US embassy cable from Doha says Khanfar agreed to "tone down" objectionable content on the station's website and promised to "remove it over the subsequent two or three days."
The cable, from last year, was released by Wikileaks on August 30.