Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Mediterranean Info Radio launches today

A satellite radio network* which bills itself as the Mediterranean region’s first “grassroots” broadcaster, MIR (Mediterranean Info Radio) is launching today. “MIR will transmit all types of community radio including Catholic and anti-globalisation stations, giving a platform to those who have been denied a voice or have been overlooked,” said Francesco Diasio from Italy’s AmisNet radio news agency, MIR’s creator and co-producer. It is a “BBC for the poor” that will offer news and analysis, entertainment and music programmes, he added.
“People living in countries where radios are not necessarily free and their is censorship will be able to use MIR as an instrument to speak out and get their voices heard,” Diasio continued.
MIR will also be a way for radio stations and production groups that previously lacked a distribution channel to share content. Radio stations from various European countries and from North Africa and the Middle East are taking part, including Slovenia’s Radio Llubjiana, the Bethlehem-based Palestinian New Network, several local Italian radio stations, Radio Ammannet in Jordan and other partners in France, Turkey, Spain and Morocco.
“In the era of digital radio, and when there are satellite dishes on everyone’s balconies, even in countries where media censorship exists, the time seemed ripe for such a radio station,” said Diasio.
MIR will draw on a network of contacts, as it is AmisNet’s editorial policy to interpret and analyse events, not just transmit straight news, he emphasised. Programming will be in various languages, with in-depth reports on civil society initiatives and social movements.
The focus will be on the Mediterranean Basin that will be a “bridge between the northern and southern shores of the Mediterranean. Peace, minority rights, the fight against discrimination, integration, independent media, freedom of movement and speech, and the environment are among the topics MIR will seek to cover.
“There will be a lot of information, but also entertainment and music programmes,” Diasio said.
(Source: AKI/R Netherlands Media Network Weblog)