Radio Farda Launches First of Three Programs Spotlighting Developments in Iran

Washington, D.C., Feb. 19, 2003 – Radio Farda, a new Persian-language radio station aimed at Iran’s young listeners, has launched, “This Week in Iran,” a 30-minute roundtable discussion program that will explore political and social topics each week.

“This Week in Iran,” which runs every Friday, is the first of three half-hour programs that Radio Farda ( will introduce this month. The others, “Democracy and Human Rights Roundtable” and “The Youth Scene,” will air later in February.

“Our Iranian listeners – all those people who want to see freedom and democracy introduced to their country – will be well-served by the news feature programs that we’re introducing on Radio Farda,” said Kenneth Y. Tomlinson, chairman of the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG), which oversees all U.S. international broadcasting, including Radio Farda.

In its inaugural Feb. 14, 2003 show, “This Week in Iran” featured experts from Tehran, Paris and Geneva evaluating the legacy of Iran’s 1979 revolution on the 24th anniversary of the event. In addition, Radio Farda broadcast a two-hour special live program on the United Nations’ inspectors’ report on Iraq’s weapons and the U.S. and international reactions. Correspondents from Washington, New York, Moscow and Rome contributed to the report, along with prominent Iranians in Tehran.

Radio Farda, which debuted on Dec. 18, 2002, has attracted wide listenership in Iran with its round-the-clock programming.

Operated from Washington and Prague, Czech Republic, Radio Farda is a 24-hour-a-day, 7-day-a-week station that broadcasts up-to-the-minute news twice an hour, with longer, in-depth news and news analysis in the morning and evening prime time. In addition to the station’s 46 newscasts per day, Radio Farda also plays Persian and Western music, which is mostly banned in Iran. Radio Farda – Farda means tomorrow in Persian — is broadcast on medium-wave (AM), shortwave, digital audio satellite and streamed on the Internet. Radio Farda, which represents an increase in news and information provided by U.S. international broadcasting to Iran, complements the Voice of America’s (VOA) radio and television programs in Persian.

The BBG is an independent federal agency which supervises all U.S. government-supported non-military international broadcasting, including the Voice of America (VOA), Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL); Radio Free Asia (RFA); Radio and TV Mart