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VOA Weekly Programming Highlights: October 27, 2022

The Voice of America - A Free Press Matters

VOA’s Value-Added Reporting Provides U.S. and International Perspectives on Ukraine War

VOA’s value-added reporting on Russia’s ongoing war against Ukraine featured compelling coverage from both inside and outside Ukraine, from Capitol Hill to the recently de-occupied city of Kupyansk. Exclusive interviews with U.S. and international newsmakers included former U.S. Undersecretary of State for Arms Control Rose Gottemoeller who provided perspective on current nuclear tensions; Ukrainian politician Olena Shulyak on U.S.-Ukraine relations and the three fronts – military, diplomatic and economic – on which Ukraine is currently fighting; and Ukrainian-born GOP congressional candidate Angela Grabovsky. Coverage also featured a special documentary Kyiv-Sofia-Hollywood about two Ukrainian refugees in Bulgaria, simultaneous translation of Friday’s UNSC meeting on the maintenance of peace and security in Ukraine, and a story from Lviv, where American doctors are helping Ukrainian soldiers and civilians adjust to using prosthetics. Coverage garnered hundreds of thousands of views and a high level of engagement on digital platforms.

VOA Persian Engages its Audience with Impactful Stories During Sixth Week of Iranian Protests

As the nationwide protests in Iran enter their sixth week, VOA Persian reported on developments inside Iran and the global response to these protests. Kourosh Aladin reported on the Evin prison fire and the prisoners’ condition. Gazelle Sharmahd, whose father is imprisoned in Evin, told VOA: “We do not know if he is alive,” and Ali Emadi reported that Elnaz Rekabi competed in a rock-climbing competition at Asian Championships in Seoul without a hijab. Many viewers saw this as her support of Iran’s #MahsaAmini protests. Audience engagement on all digital platforms surpassed 2,979,860.

VOA's New Podcast "Flashpoint Iran" Well Received by Analysts and Audience

The VOA News Center launched a new weekly 25-minute podcast in English titled “Flashpoint Iran” on October 18 to offer in-depth analysis on the rising tensions in Iran and a big picture understanding of daily events. A News Center editor, Steve Miller, hosted the first show, and News Center journalist Michael Lipin is hosting subsequent shows. Lipin’s tweet about the inaugural episode was re-tweeted by the Foundation for Defense of Democracies’ CEO Mark Dubowitz to his 67,000 followers. The Global Network Initiative’s executive director Jason Pielemeier also tweeted about it. And United Against Nuclear Iran issued a press release about Chief of Staff Claire Jungman joining the program as a guest.

VOA Coverage of Ethiopia’s Conflict Escalation Generates Audience Interest

VOA Horn of Africa was on the scene when Tigrayans in London demonstrated in front of the British parliament, urging the international community to help stop the fighting in northern Ethiopia and provide emergency humanitarian assistance. Audience interest has been exemplified in a VOA video of Horn of Africa’s coverage of this demonstration, which has received more than 125k video views. VOA also covered a competing demonstration in London condemning TPLF and what they called "unnecessary interference of the international community in the Ethiopian internal affairs."

VOA Spanish Special Border Immigration Coverage Popular with Affiliates and Audience

VOA Spanish correspondent Jorge Agobian traveled to Arizona to cover irregular crossings along the U.S. border near Yuma, Arizona. There he witnessed the arrival of three Guatemalan minors hoping to reunite with their father. The story garnered more than 10K views across digital platforms. Agobian also covered the arrival of the first Venezuelan parole beneficiaries and spoke with a Venezuelan migrant admitted to the U.S. under the new program. The story was shared by more than a dozen media outlets, including TV Azteca, Efecto Cocuyo, EVTV, La Patilla, El Diario and was tweeted by the U.S. Embassy in Colombia and the U.S. Ambassador James Story. In addition, this coverage got more than 40K website page views and more than 575K views across social media.

VOA Thai’s Exclusive Interview with Activist Sparks Rare, Vibrant Discussion on Monarchy

Viewers flocked to VOA Thai's interview with Pavin Chachavalpongpun - one of Thailand's most influential activists for accountability and transparency of the country's monarchy - with nearly 250,000 views and more than 100,000 engagement actions on social media. Pavin, a Thai scholar and political exile, explained how he saw his role in promoting constitutional monarchy and Thai democracy. The interview prompted lively online debate about the future of Thailand's 800-year-old monarchy - a topic that is on people’s minds but not freely discussed, given its strict lese majeste law.

Pakistani Authorities Recognize VOA Deewa's Reporting on Public Health in Remote Regions

VOA Deewa's coverage of polio was recognized as a distinguished example of highlighting public health issues in remote regions of Pakistan, as the service’s reporter Naimat Ullah received an award for his contributions. “Your reporting for VOA Deewa on polio has been very helpful for us,” Zafar Baloch, spokesman for Baluchistan’s Emergency Operations Center, told Naimat Ullah at the award ceremony on October 21 in Quetta. “VOA Deewa is very effective in the border districts of Balochistan and remote Pashtun regions, [and] people tell us that VOA Deewa is their source of news.”

VOA Programming Highlights are compiled based on information available from multiple sources at the time of posting. This information constantly evolves. If you intend to cite to information posted in VOA Highlights, please consult VOA Public Relations at to ensure it is accurate and current.