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DW Director Bettermann Signs Cooperation Agreement with Afghan Television in Kabul

Soon DW TV will be on the air for two hours daily - first agreement of Radio-Television/Kabul with a foreign broadcasting station - DW director: great recognition of "our information competence".

During German Federal Chancellor Gerhard Schröder's visit to Kabul, Deutsche Welle (DW) was the first foreign broadcasting corporation to sign a cooperation agreement with Radio-Television/Kabul, Afghanistan.

The document was signed by DW director Erik Bettermann and the deputy Minister of Information and Culture Abdul Hamid Mubarez in the presence of the Federal Chancellor and the head of interim government Hamid Karzai. DW announced this on 9 May 2002.

"In the past seven months I have been director of Germany's foreign broadcasting", declared Bettermann, "signing this agreement was perhaps the greatest moment." The agreement, added the director, was a great recognition on the part of the Afghan interim government of the information competence of DW and the credibility of DW-TV. "The cooperation is not least based on the great trust Deutsche Welle has won thanks to its decades of presence with its radio programmes in Dari and Pashto in Afghanistan."

The cooperation agreement plans that Germany's international television DW-TV will broadcast for one hour daily in each of the two main Afghan languages Dari and Pashto using the so-called "voice-over" process in the programme of Afghan television. "Journal", the news magazine of DW-TV, as well as documentary films and news magazines in the second half-hour, will be broadcast.

Bettermann stressed that DW was hoping that the cooperation would support the Afghan population on their way to becoming a civilian society.

Experts envisage that, because of the high rate of illiteracy (more than 90 per cent), there will be a boom in television as a media in the region. Approximately 500 satellite receivers are bought every week on the markets of Kabul. The technical range of Afghan television, which currently broadcasts for six hours daily, has a radius of about 40 kilometres and covers the area of greater Kabul.

9th May 2002
69/02

Christoph Jumpelt

Christoph Jumpelt

Head of Corporate Communications and Spokesperson

T. +49.228.429-2041
christoph.jumpelt@dw.com

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