Radio Liberty/Free Europe: Broadcasting – Abkhazia and South Ossetia!

Georgia is hot, bothered and steamy over a new radio broadcast that will start November 2nd, 2009! Georgia is threatening everything from destruction of the radio station to blocking the signal with devices to scramble the signal. I have watched this broadcast being developed for a few weeks now and I was not sure that it would be carried through with. And as we can see, it is going to happen…

I am using Georgia Times article because it is the most congenial of the Georgian sources that I have found. The rest from Georgia are a little rough and threatening.

On November 2nd Radio Liberty/Free Europe starts broadcasting the Echo of Caucasus program in Russian language orientated for listeners in South Ossetia and Abkhazia, on waves 9525 and 9780 – the Kavkazskiy Uzel.

The daily 1-hour program is planned to be prepared in Prague by Russian and Georgian editorial offices, the editor will be Andrey Babitskiy.

“There’s a deficiency of information in the entire territory of the post-Soviet space, and in this region it’s felt especially acute”, Babitskiy said and mentioned that people in South Ossetia and Abkhazia have to suffice with Russian sources.

He promised that the radio Liberty would present the view from both Moscow and the West, and at the cross of the lines the talk will get both depth and sharpness.

Tbilisi assessed this step as “informational recognition” of South Ossetia and Abkhazia.

Previously Sergey Shamba, the Foreign Minister of Abkhazia, said the republic would approve the work of the radio station only in case the programs would have nothing to do with Georgia.

At the same time, the Georgian republic Department for Governmental Information is strongly against and promised to take drastic measures, up to suppression of the signal.

So once again we have an interesting issue that is developing in the Caucasus. One more slap in Sassy’s face and one more reason for the Georgian people to send him back to America…

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