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VOA Weekly Programming Highlights: March 29, 2023

VOA Mandarin Cited in House of Representatives Hearings on TikTok, Uyghurs

VOA Mandarin was mentioned twice on the same day in two congressional hearings. During the hearing on the Chinese-owned app TikTok, Rep. Neal Dunn (R-FL) asked if TikTok would allow censorship like Xiaomi, a Chinese cellphone company that blocks words such as “Voice of America” and “democracy” from its platform. Separately, a congressional tweet promoting a hearing on the Uyghur genocide used video from a VOA Mandarin interview with witness and Xinjiang internment camp survivor Gulbahar Haitiwaji. The March 23 hearings came amid growing bipartisan calls for a tougher US stance on China.

VOA’s Exclusive Coverage of Ukrainian Soldiers Training in the U.S. Widely Republished

Aired by the Ukrainian National TV Marathon in prime time, VOA Ukrainian’s on-the-ground coverage of the training of Ukrainian soldiers in the U.S. reached millions of viewers, was cited more than 20 times by Ukrainian media and garnered more than 112,000 views and more than 13,000 interactions on social media. Reporting from Fort Sill, Okla., VOA Ukrainian’s Ostap Yarysh shared his observations in two video-standups, a live interactive for VOA Ukrainian TV shows and two web reports. The story was also used by VOA English, and, notably, aired by Russian state media “Russia 1” during its flagship show, “60 Minutes," translated into Russian.

Investigations Of Venezuelan Public Officials’ Corruption Draws Large Audiences

VOA Spanish extensively covered reports the Venezuelan government is conducting investigations of public officials for alleged “administrative corruption and embezzlement.” Amid protests demanding transparency in the investigations, Tareck el Aissami resigned as Oil Minister to "support this crusade" by President Maduro. Analysts suggest the anti-corruption operation is an internal movement seeking to strengthen Maduro’s circle of power ahead of the 2024 elections. This content generated 135k views across social media from March 19-26.

VOA News Center Coverage of VP Harris' Africa Trip Attracts Audiences

The News Center's White House correspondent, Anita Powell, is traveling with Vice President Kamala Harris to Ghana, Tanzania, and Zambia from March 25 to April 2, providing pool coverage, reports, analysis, and interviews. Harris is the highest-ranking official from the Biden administration to tour Africa and is focused on enhancing partnerships, promoting opportunity, boosting trade and strengthening security. At the first stop in Ghana, Powell covered public speeches, tours and pledges during Harris’ visit, while VOA stringers Kent Mensah and Henry Wilkins reported on trade issues.

VOA Africa Division Coverage of Vice President Harris Visit to Ghana Generates Strong Audience Interest

The coverage of US Vice President Kamala Harris' visit to Ghana by the VOA Africa division generated significant interest among audiences on all broadcasting platforms. The Hausa Service’s live digital streaming of the Vice President's joint news conference with President Akufo-Nana Ado of Ghana received more than 32,000 live views on March 27. This news conference was part of the Vice President's three-nation visit to Ghana, Tanzania and Zambia.

VOA Persian’s Nowruz Special Resonates with Viewers

VOA Persian produced an 8-hour Nowruz Special, which aired on television and digital platforms on March 20, garnering hundreds of thousands of views. This original production with diverse programming was a major hit with viewers in Iran and all over the world. Hosted by Ehsan Karami, programming included in-depth interviews, musical performances, video message from protest victims’ families, and video greetings from 53 Iranian celebrities, actors, musicians and athletes. 23 VOA Persian reporters appeared on the program. Audience engagement for this special surpassed 7,725,584 from March 20-March 28, 2023, across all digital platforms.

S&CA Language Services’ Coverage of Nowruz Holiday Engages Audience

VOA Afghan, Azerbaijani, Kurdish and Uzbek Services’ coverage of the traditional spring celebrations on March 20-21 generated significant traffic on social media platforms. VOA Afghan coverage, which included the Taliban cancellation of the public holiday, generated 14 million video views on Facebook. VOA Kurdish reports from Nowruz celebrations in Turkey, Iraq and Syria drew more than 800,000 views on Facebook. VOA Azerbaijani covered the Nowruz concert at the U.S. State Department on March 21, and VOA Uzbek conducted a Facebook Live report from a festival at George Washington University, generating significant views.

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.