WASHINGTON, DC -- The U.S. Broadcasting Board of Governors, which supervises all U.S. government-sponsored, civilian international broadcasting organizations including RFE/RL, has issued a joint statement with the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), calling on the UN General Assembly to condemn Iranian government efforts “to silence independent media in Iran.”
The two organizations cite the recent arrest of six filmmakers in Iran “on vague and unfounded accusations of collaborating with BBC Persian” television as the latest in a series of Iranian government actions that amount to “an escalating campaign” aimed at BBC Persian, RFE/RL’s Radio Farda and Voice of America’s Persian News Network. These practices include satellite jamming, Internet disruption and hacking and the intimidation of journalists, government critics and online activists, “in flagrant violation of international standards.”
Please read the complete statement below, and on the BBG’s website.
September 23, 2011 - The U.S. Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG ) and the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) take the opportunity of this UN General Assembly to protest an escalating campaign by the Iranian government to silence independent media in Iran.
As recently as last weekend, Iranian authorities arrested several documentary makers on vague and unfounded accusations of collaborating with BBC Persian. The arrests coincided with the broadcast of a documentary film about Iran's supreme leader on BBC Persian television.
We deplore such arbitrary practices that have included satellite jamming; continuous Internet disruption; intimidation of journalists, government critics and online activists; and aggressive hacking practices. These tactics have been aimed at BBC Persian, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty's Radio Farda and the Voice of America's Persian News Network.
We object to accusations of secrecy and conspiracy when it is the right and responsibility of independent media to promote the free flow of information and uncensored exchange of ideas.
The Iranian government's efforts to thwart independent media are in flagrant violation of international standards and norms to which Iran is a signatory and which its voluntary participation in this UN session would seem to endorse.
Such practices should be condemned during this UN General Assembly.
BBC World Service is an international multimedia broadcaster, delivering a wide range of language and regional services on radio, TV, online and via wireless handheld devices. It uses multiple platforms to reach its weekly audience of 166 million globally, including shortwave, AM, FM, digital satellite and cable channels. Its news sites include audio and video content and offer opportunities to join the global debate. BBC World Service offers its multilingual radio content to partner FM stations around the world and has numerous partnerships supplying content to news websites, mobile phones and other wireless handheld devices as well as TV channels. For more information, visit bbcworldservice.com.
The Broadcasting Board of Governors is an independent federal agency, supervising all U.S. government-supported, civilian international broadcasting, whose mission is to inform and engage people around the world in support of freedom and democracy. BBG broadcasts reach an audience of 165 million in 100 countries. BBG broadcasting organizations include the Voice of America, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, the Middle East Broadcasting Networks (Alhurra TV and Radio Sawa), Radio Free Asia, and the Office of Cuba Broadcasting (Radio and TV Marti). For more information, visit www.bbg.gov.
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