Washington, D.C., August 8, 2008 – The Voice of America (VOA) is doubling its Georgian language broadcasts in the wake of fighting between Georgia and Russia in the breakaway province of South Ossetia.
VOA's Geogian Service will produce a 60-minute program daily, up from 30 minutes, with news, information, interviews, analysis and reaction to the crisis in the former Soviet Republic. News is also available on the Internet at www.VOANews.com/georgian/
"We want to make sure Georgians are fully informed about what's happening in their country," said Steve Redisch, VOA's Executive Editor.
The Georgian broadcasts are carried nationwide on a FM network as well as on shortwave frequencies 11945 and 15460 from 1530 to 1600 UTC, and on 11965 and 15460 from 1600 to 1630 UTC.
Reporters and stringers on the ground are providing VOA with reports from inside the country, which is slightly smaller than the state of South Carolina and has about 4.6 million people.
The crisis began when Georgian troops launched a military strike on the province of South Ossetia early Friday, seeking to end the region's bid for autonomy. In response, Russian troops entered the border province. The Voice of America, which first went on the air in 1942, is a multimedia international broadcasting service funded by the U.S. government through the Broadcasting Board of Governors. VOA (www.VOANews.com) broadcasts more than 1,250 hours of news, information, educational, and cultural programming every week to an estimated worldwide audience of more than 134 million people. Programs are produced in 45 languages.
For more information, call the Office of Public Affairs at (202) 203-4959, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.