WASHINGTON, DC – Radio Free Asia’s Burmese service today broadcast the first televised episode of its nightly news program in Burma. Hosted by two co-anchors, the half-hour program aired via television satellite at 8:30 p.m. local time, and featured news about Nobel Peace Prize laureate and opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi’s, left, registration to participate in the country’s upcoming elections and interviews with recently released Burmese political prisoners, among other major Burma stories. In a recorded statement that aired on the inaugural program, Suu Kyi praised Radio Free Asia (RFA) for its continued excellence in delivering accurate news and information to the Burmese people.
“It’s a great honor to greet the viewers of Radio Free Asia’s first ever television program in Burma. While I was under house arrest, not only did Radio Free Asia keep me informed about the latest news happening in Burma, it gave me knowledge,” Suu Kyi said.
Nyein Shwe, the director of RFA’s Burmese service, said, “With the vastly growing popularity of television in Burma, this is an exciting opportunity for Radio Free Asia to build on the phenomenal success of our radio journalism and reach an even bigger audience. RFA Burmese is seizing this moment, as great changes are happening in Burma, to meet the needs of a public yearning for truth.”
The 30-minute program airs seven days a week, with new episodes on weekdays and repeated content on weekends. With content gathered within Burma from videographers and stringers, the nightly program will feature interviews, news, and reports on developments in the country, with a focus on the April 1 elections. The televised program supplements the four hours daily RFA Burmese broadcasts via satellite and shortwave. Television episodes are also available online on the RFA Burmese service’s website at http://www.rfa.org/burmese/.
Radio Free Asia is a private, nonprofit corporation broadcasting and publishing online news, information, and commentary in nine East Asian languages to listeners who do not have access to full and free news media. RFA’s broadcasts seek to promote the rights of freedom of opinion and expression, including the freedom to “seek, receive, and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.” RFA is funded by an annual grant from the Broadcasting Board of Governors.