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VOA statement on government of Burundi’s suspension of VOA operations

The Voice of America condemns the recent action of the government of Burundi to suspend its broadcast operations for six months, effective May 7.

“We are dismayed by the actions taken today by the Burundi National Communications Council to ban VOA from broadcasting its news and information programs,” said VOA Director Amanda Bennett. “Our audience members count on VOA to provide factual, unbiased and objective coverage of current events, so this ban deprives the citizens of Burundi of a trusted news source during a critical time in that country. This is even more distressing coming only one day after World Press Freedom Day – a day calling for governments to remove, not impose, restrictions on the media.”

VOA content will continue to be available in Kirundi and Kinyarwanda via shortwave channels, on the Internet and on FM transmitters located in neighboring countries.

About VOA

Voice of America reaches a global weekly audience of more than 236.8 million people in 45 languages. VOA programs are delivered on satellite, cable, shortwave, FM, medium wave, streaming audio and video and more than 2,350 media outlets worldwide. It is funded by the U.S. Congress through the BBG.