A new charter adopted by the League of Arab States will be harmful to the practice of a free press, according to U.S. government international broadcast officials.
The U.S. Broadcasting Board of Governors criticized adoption of the new broadcasting charter this month by Arab information ministers. BBG said the charter aims to tighten government control on satellite radio and TV broadcasting.
The charter “threatens restrictions on the practice of a free press,” BBG stated. “In so doing, it contradicts Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the United Nations in 1948, which states, ‘everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.’”
The board oversees U.S. international broadcasting including Voice of America.