Institute for War and Peace Reporting | Giving Voice, Driving Change
Turkmenistan is an extreme dictatorship, with a secretive leadership and virtually no international profile. Life inside the country is harsh – poverty combined with state repression is compounded by the almost total lack of access to independent news and opinion. State broadcasters and press mouth the president’s latest thoughts, and freedom of expression has been entirely stamped out.
In this repressive atmosphere, IWPR, which has been active in the region since 2000, has been one of the lone voices reporting first-hand from Turkmenistan. Now, in conjunction with Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, it is drawing on its expertise to produce a series of radio pieces made by Turkmen reporters for broadcast to the country.
“Dictators clamp down on free journalism because they know what an impact it can have,” said IWPR Executive Director Anthony Borden. “But courageous journalists continue to report on Turkmenistan, and IWPR is delighted to be able to provide them with this unique platform.”
IWPR builds peace and democracy through free and fair media (see www.iwpr.net). The Turkmen radio project complements IWPR’s expanding portfolio of media development activities in two dozen countries on four continents. From training Iraqi journalists and giving a voice to Afghan woman reporters to providing ready-to-air news bulletins for radio stations across Uganda, IWPR is at the front line of free speech and peace-building.
The first edition of Inside View went out on February 9-10 on RFE/RL’s Turkmen language service. The programmes, in Turkmen language, will be posted on the IWPR website as soundfiles, together with transcripts in Turkmen, Russian and English.
For further information on this project, please contact:
John MacLeod, Senior Editor (based in London)
+44 (0)207 269 9586
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