Radio Sawa, the new Arabic-language broadcasting service that reaches across the Middle East, on Friday began streaming audio on its Internet site (www.radiosawa.com).
Radio Sawa, run by the U.S. Government-funded Middle East Radio Network (MERN), features news, information, music and other programming 24-hours a day, seven days a week.
“We always envisioned Radio Sawa as being a station where we have a lot of interaction with our listeners,” said Norman J. Pattiz, a member of the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG), which oversees all U.S., non-military, international broadcasting. “Our Internet site will help us do that. It will help us stay in touch and communicate with our audiences.”
Pattiz, who helped develop the new radio service, said streaming audio will also allow listeners around the world, not just in the Middle East, to tune into the radio.
In the coming months, the Internet site will add content, including news, information and archives in Arabic.
Launched on March 23, 2002, Radio Sawa is a pilot project of the Voice of America (VOA). It is available to millions of listeners across the Middle East on medium-wave (AM), FM and shortwave frequencies as well as on the Internet and through the digital radio satellite channels of Nilesat, Arabsat and Eutelsat Hotbird.
When fully operational in the fall of 2002, the service will broadcast news, analysis, interviews, opinion pieces, roundtables, sports, weather, music and features on a variety of political and social issues in five regional Arabic dialects.