The first episode of Pivot Line airs Thursday, Nov. 28, at 10 p.m. Kabul time on 1TV, Afghanistan’s second-largest commercial network.
“This interactive new show puts Voice of America in the middle of the Afghan media map,” says VOA Afghanistan Service Chief Masood Farivar. “Pivot Line makes us a part of this important conversation on the future of Afghanistan.”
The hour-long show airs once monthly and brings together policymakers and experts in Washington and Kabul, tackling topics of critical importance to Afghanistan and the US, including the security transition, corruption, development aid, and human rights issues.
Panelists in both locations take questions from a live studio audience in Kabul, with simultaneous translation from English and Dari. The program also has a Facebook page, where questions can be posted.
Thursday’s episode features Ambassador James Dobbins, US Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, and Kai Eide, former UN Special Representative to Afghanistan. Both were in VOA’s Washington studio with VOA co-host Said Sulaiman Ashna.
From Kabul, co-host Mirwais Arya is joined in studio by Mohammed Masoom Stanekzai, Security Adviser to President Karzai, and Said Tayeb Jawad, former Afghan Ambassador to the United States.
“Pivot Line comes at a truly pivotal time in US-Afghan relations,” says VOA Executive Editor Steve Redisch. “No other media outlet in the world will have this kind of show this week, amidst recent negotiations on bilateral relations.”
Voice of America’s Afghanistan Service broadcasts on radio and television in Dari and Pashto languages. The service’s hour-long daily program TV Ashna airs on state broadcaster RTA (Radio Television Afghanistan), and is one of the most popular international newscasts.