Wicker Pushes to Keep Foreign Radio Services Open

March 11, 2014

WASHINGTONU.S. Senator Roger Wicker, R-Miss., a leading Senator on the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, is urging the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) to continue operating Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty’s Balkan Service and Radio Free Iraq.

“These independent radio, television, and Internet broadcasts are vital to American interests abroad,” said Wicker.  “Ending these services without appropriate congressional oversight is premature.  Considering Russia’s military aggression in Ukraine and persistent instability in the Middle East, now is not the time to end important communications overseas.”

Wicker recently sent a letter to the chairman of BBG calling on him to stop action to close these radio services until the proper congressional oversight committees complete their due diligence on the issue.

Radio Free Europe and Radio Free Iraq are broadcasted in 28 languages and cover news from 21 countries where free press is banned.  They employ more than 1,000 full-time and freelance journalists who often risk their lives to report stories in dangerous conditions.