Culture and Information authorities have placed a ban on FM radio broadcasts streaming from Voice of America (VOA) and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) Afghanistan stations due to “non-observance of journalistic principles.”
According to a tweet from Abdul Haq Hammad, who oversees broadcasting for the Ministry of Information and Culture of the incumbent Afghan administration, Radio Azadi broadcasts have been banned in 13 Afghan provinces.
“Radio Azadi (RL), which started broadcasting after the American occupation, was stopped due to non-compliance with journalistic principles and one-sided broadcasts,” Hammad wrote on his Twitter handle.
Meanwhile, VOA also reported that a new directive from the Afghan Ministry of Information and Culture has placed a ban on VOA’s broadcasts, effective from December 1.
The Voice of America television program, known as Ashna TV, which had previously been broadcast on the Tolo TV, TOLONews, and Lamar TV channels, was suspended on March 27 this year by the authorities in Afghanistan.
Voice of America began airing radio programs in Dari and Pashto in Afghanistan in October 1980 and July 1982, respectively. Radio Azadi officially started broadcasting in Afghanistan in 2002.
There were 547 media outlets in Afghanistan during the previous administration, according to Reporters Without Borders, but 219 print, aural, and visual media were shut down after the current administration assumed power.
Since taking over last year, the government has placed a number of limitations on the media and journalists in Afghanistan, including mandating female presenters t cover their faces while on air.
Free press organizations have slammed them with pervasive media censorship and muzzling, harassing reporters, and depriving female media workers of the right to employment.