BBG Media Highlights - July 26, 2013
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Cambodia: Systematic Problems Undermine Elections - Human Rights Watch, July 26, 2013
Self censorship is a significant problem for journalists seeking to cover the election. Journalists are aware of what happened to Mom Sonando, the owner of Beehive Radio, one of only two remaining independent radio stations in Cambodia; there are no independent television stations. Mom Sonando was arrested in 2003, 2005, and 2012 on politically motivated charges in retaliation for broadcasting phone-in programs critical of the government and CPP, and selling blocks of air time to US-funded Radio Free Asia and Voice of America. In 2012, he was convicted and imprisoned for 20 years on sham charges of participating in an armed rebellion. Under international pressure he was released in March 2013, after a CPP-controlled appeals court resentenced him to a five year suspended sentence.


In Azerbaijan, a journalist under siege - Columbia Journalism Review, July 25, 2013
It was supposed to be a punishment-220 hours plucking garbage off the streets of Baku, Azerbaijan. Instead, journalist Khadija Ismayilova turned her community service assignment into an impromptu rally for change. In a Facebook post, Ismayilova told supporters she would be "sweeping for democracy," bringing attention to the corruption and human rights abuses that plague the oil-rich country. Activists, journalists, and friends pledged to join her during the day.


Surgeons Eyed Over Deals With Medical-Device Makers - Wall Street Journal, July 25, 2013
Dr. Sabit, 39, was born in Kabul, Afghanistan, but his family fled the country in 1979 during the Soviet invasion. In a deposition, he said they lived in a tent in Pakistan for four years until they emigrated to the U.S. The family settled in Arlington, Va. Dr. Sabit's father, Abdul Jabbar Sabit, got a job as a reporter for Voice of America. He returned to Afghanistan after the fall of the Taliban and served as Afghanistan's attorney general from 2006 to 2008. 


A tribute to Chiwoniso Maraire - News Day, July 26, 2013
Mamimine said he attributed his success to her as she kept on encouraging him to realise his dream. Mamimine, who sings with his Positive Living Choir, was the first runner-up in the Africa Health award sponsored by Voice of America.

Citations of BBG Broadcasters

Buddhist monk blames Muslims for Myanmar bombing - Washington Post, July 25, 2013
In a digital disc being passed around Mandalay, a "Muslim religious leader says that the Prophet Muhammad is asking for the heads of Wirathu and (fellow monk) Pyinnya Tharmi," Wirathu, 45, told Radio Free Asia's Myanmar Service. 


Leaders disagree as civilians join the fight - Mission Network News, July 26, 2013
Cracks are showing in the Boko Haram's theoretical armor as top leaders disagree. "Shekau speaks his own opinion," Boko Haram deputy leader Muhammad Marwana told Voice of America earlier this week. He's referring to fellow leader Abubakara Imam Shekau's denial of ceasefire agreements with the government.


Mystery surrounds NKorean refugee report - Myanmar Times, July 26, 2013
Major Sai Long Hseng, a spokesperson for the Restoration Council of Shan State/Shan State Army-South, said his group is not involved. We don't know anything about it," he said. "We also don't know whether it's true." Voice of America reported that the United Wa State Army also denied that it had detained any North Korean refugees. 


U.S. Charges Russians in Hacking Conspiracy, A Blow to Khodorkovsky? - Transitions Online, July 26, 2013
Many saw the case as revenge for Khodorkovsky's vocal criticism of President Vladimir Putin and nascent political ambitions. Khodorkovsky and Lebedev filed a series of related complaints with the European court, but the ruling said the accusations against them had a "healthy core" and "corresponded to a common-sense understanding of tax evasion," Radio Free Europe reports. 


Putin Cracks Down on Corruption - in Soccer, Hungary Cuts Interest to New Low - Transitions Online, July 25, 2013
Uzbekistani and Kyrgyzstani border guards clashed fatally on 23 July; that much is stipulated. Who started it and whether an apology was issued are still being hashed out in a war of words between the two Central Asian nations, according to and Radio Free Europe.

Is Iran's Military Visiting Pyongyang Right Now? - The Diplomat, July 26, 2013
According to Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Russian and Iranian media outlets are reporting that Russian President Vladimir Putin intends to visit Iran in mid-August to meet with incoming President Hassan Rouhani, who takes office on August 3.


Peace prospects: Dr Malik seeks greater cooperation - Business Recorder, July 25, 2013
Chief Minister Balochistan Dr Abdul Malik Baloch has vowed to drag Balochistan out of severe challenges with the co-operation of all political parties in the province. Malik told Voice of America in an exclusive interview that although his ruling National Party did not represent all the Baloch groups, he was calling on Baloch insurgents to join him in a mission to bring peace to the province.


Ban Ki-moon: Syrian civil war death toll tops 100,000 - UPI, July 26, 2013
"There is no military solution to Syria," Kerry said while in New York to meet with Syrian opposition members. "There is only a political solution, and that will require leadership in order to bring people to the table." One of the latest reports of Syrian violence came from the Damascus suburb of Jaramana, where a car bomb killed 17 people, Voice of America reported. 


Kim Jong Un honors North Korea war veterans - UPI, July 25, 2013
Kim did not speak during his rare public appearance and left after stopping by several graves. U.S. Medal of Honor recipient Thomas Hudner, 88, a former Navy pilot, was one of two decorated U.S. veterans invited to attend the ceremony during his visit to North Korea seeking to find the site where his wingman, Jesse Brown, crash-landed, Voice of America said.


Tunisia's largest union goes on strike after assassination - UPI, July 25, 2013
Police fired tear gas as thousands of people took to the streets in Tunis and Sidi Bouzid to protest Brahmi's death, which many blamed on the ruling Islamist Ennahda party, the Voice of America. The Ennahda party has also been accused by some of the killing of Chokri Belaid, a prominent secular figure, in February, the BBC reported. Protesters are calling for the Ennahda to relinquish power. 


Outspoken Singer Detained Over Explosion Remarks - China Digital Times, July 26, 2013
Wu's Weibo post came as part of the wave of online support expressed for Ji Zhongxing, the 33-year-old man who detonated a homemade explosive at the Beijing airport last weekend, apparently in a desperate act of protest to win compensation for police brutality that left him paralyzed and wheelchair-bound. As the AP report cites friend and activist Hu Jia mentioning that Wu has been "singled out... partly because she has been outspoken on social ills in the past," Radio Free Asia's coverage of Wu's detention quotes Human Rights Watch on Wu's past bluntness: "[...T]he New York-based Human Rights Watch (HRW) said Wu's detention is probably politically motivated after her previous criticisms of the ruling Chinese Communist Party." 


US Companies Make Ramadan Easier - AhlulBayt News Agency, July 26, 2013
Making life easier for Muslim employees, a number of Washington companies are making efforts to accommodate the religious minority prayers and iftar during the holy fasting month of Ramadan. "When the Muslims who work in our company are having their daily prayers they provide us space for prayer so that we can have a quiet place to pray, and that's year round," Rizwan Jaka, a board member of the All Dulles Area Muslim Society (ADAMS), the largest mosque in the Washington, D.C. area, told Voice of America on Wednesday, July 24. 

In the foreign-language press:


Perez: Morsi Is a President Elected Democratically and Syria's Problem Is There is No Substitute for the Government  - UPI, July 24, 2013
UPI cited excerpts from Alhurra's interview with the Israeli President Shimon Perez regarding the Egyptian political situation, the Syrian crisis, Hizbollah's involvement in Syria and the restart of negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.


This article was republished by the following news sources:


Al-Khaleej, Al-Qabas, Masr Press, Cedar News, Nahar Net, Al-Mogaz, January 25, Al-Waqea, Rewesh, Christian Dogma, Khabar Ajil, Elbadeel, Qary, Kalam Akhbar, Jesus Sons, Egypt Today, Misr Day, Egypt Politics, MiladObserver Middle East  

Of Interest

Hamas Closes 2 Media Offices in Gaza for Criticism - AP, July 25, 2013
Hamas rulers in this Palestinian territory have shuttered two Arab media bureaus over their coverage of Gaza's Islamist leaders. Hamas Attorney General Ismail Jaber told The Associated Press Thursday that he closed the Gaza Strip bureaus of satellite channel Al Arabiya and West Bank-based outlet Maan because they "spread fabricated rumors" that "harm the Palestinian national interest and resistance movements."

Journalist's challenge: Handling the handlers in North Korea - CBS, July 25, 2013
The North rarely allows foreign journalists inside the country, but CBS News was allowed into Pyongyang to report on what we saw -- or at least, what the North Koreans want us to see. It wasn't long after CBS News landed that the government assigned us a minder who would accompany us everywhere we went.

About Us

The Broadcasting Board of Governors is an independent federal agency supervising all U.S. government-supported, civilian international broadcasting media, whose mission is to inform, engage and connect people around the world in support of freedom and democracy. BBG broadcasts reach an audience of 203 million in more than 100 countries and in 61 languages.  BBG broadcasting organizations include the Voice of America, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, the Middle East Broadcasting Networks (Alhurra TV and Radio Sawa), Radio Free Asia, and the Office of Cuba Broadcasting (Radio and TV Marti).