Thursday, December 16, 2010

South Korean shortwave station joins hands to target North Korea

Text of report by South Korean newspaper Choson Ilbo website on 16 December

Four radio stations broadcasting programmes to North Korea joined hands in a live event at Cheonggye Plaza in downtown Seoul on Wednesday afternoon.

Radio Free North Korea, North Korea Reform Radio, Open Radio for North Korea, and Radio Free Chosun denounced the North for shelling Yeonpyeong Island in November and called for the resumption of propaganda broadcasts to the North. A telephone conversation with a North Korean was played during the live broadcast. The resident of North Hamgyong Province, identified only as Choi, said that after the shelling rice prices more than doubled and power supply was cut off there.

“When I was in the North, I listened a lot to radio programmes broadcast from South Korea,” one defector said. “Although I was afraid of being found out, I listened because I was anxious to know about the outside world. Many people there did the same”.

Ha Tae-keung, the head of Open Radio, called for the South Korean government to support the stations. “Currently, broadcasters specializing in programmes for the North are transmitting on shortwave, which costs tens of thousands of dollars in royalties to foreign countries. We could broadcast better sound quality to more North Koreans if we’re given mediumwave or AM frequencies which the government isn’t using”.

(Source: Choson Ilbo website, Seoul, in English 16 Dec 10 via BBC Monitoring)
(R Netherlands Media Network Weblog)