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Uzbekistan Grants First Ever Accreditation to a VOA Journalist

Navbahor Imamova, VOA Uzbek Service
Navbahor Imamova, VOA Uzbek Service

Washington, D.C. -- For the first time since the VOA Uzbek language service went on air in 1972, a VOA journalist received accreditation from the Republic of Uzbekistan to work as foreign media correspondent inside that country.

The announcement coincides with the visit of Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev to the United States this week. The Uzbek service plans extensive coverage of the visit and the Uzbek National News Agency will rely on VOA reporting.

VOA Uzbek service reporter Navbahor Imamova is the only U.S. journalist included on the Uzbek government’s recently released list of accredited media.

“It is a historic moment for VOA and a testament to our high journalistic standards that we can now report from inside the Republic of Uzbekistan alongside the other members of the foreign press corps in that country,” said VOA Director Amanda Bennett.

Imamova is an authority on geopolitics and national development in Central Asia. She has covered Central Asia and the United States for more than 15 years as an anchor, reporter, multimedia editor and producer. She played a pivotal role in the launch of Uzbek television programming at VOA in 2003 and produced nearly 800 editions of the service’s flagship weekly show, Amerika Manzaralari.

“The Uzbek National News Agency and online media in Uzbekistan have been picking up more and more VOA reports over the last several months,” said Imamova. “They are opening up for us and hopefully for more foreign media soon.”

The VOA Uzbek Service went on the air in February 1972 to reach audiences in Uzbekistan, Central Asia and Afghanistan. Today it broadcasts a 30-minute radio program daily, an hour of television each week, and offers multimedia content online.