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The BBC resurrects the shortwave broadcasts in Ukraine and Russia that were used during the Cold War

A form of communication that was used extensively during World War II and the subsequent Cold War returns to the BBC for the Russian invasion in Ukraine: shortwave radio emissions.

After the government of Vladimir Putin blocked the BBC’s Internet pages on its territory, the British corporation decided to broadcast the World Service’s English-language news bulletins on shortwave in Ukraine and parts of Russia.

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Specifically, there are two shortwave frequencies that offer content for four hours.

“It is often said that the truth is the first casualty of war. In a conflict where disinformation and propaganda abound, there is a clear need for factual and independent news that people can trust,” he said in a statement. Tim DavisCEO of the BBC.

“We will continue to give the Russian people access to the truth, however we can,” he added.

Shortwave broadcasts served for decades in war zones, but also in places devastated by natural disasters, where other transmissions, such as satellite or internet, do not work.

Shortwave frequencies can travel long distances and are heard on inexpensive portable radios.

During World War II, technology was used by both the Nazis and the Allies to spread information among the population. But its apogee reached it in the subsequent Cold War.

The short wave served during that time for the West to transmit information beyond the Iron Curtain to the citizens of the former Soviet Union.

It was in 2008 that the BBC stopped its shortwave radio broadcasts in Europe.

Since the conflict in Ukraine began on February 24, Russia has tried to contain the flow of information both on its territory and in its neighboring country.

On March 1, the Moscow-led army attacked the main television tower in Kiev and caused programming cuts. The incident also left five dead.

BBC staff to work outside Russia

BBC headquarters in London.

Likewise, Russia also blocked other international media, such as the German Deutsche Welle and the American Radio Libertad.

The Russian Parliament on Friday approved legislation that prohibits the media from describing the conflict as an invasion. The Moscow government wants to talk about a “special military operation”.

“This legislation appears to criminalize the process of independent journalism,” Davie said.

As a result of this legislation, the BBC decided to temporarily suspend the work of its journalists in Russia.

“Our BBC Russian news service will continue to operate from outside Russia,” Davie said.

“The safety of our staff is paramount and we are not prepared to expose them to the risk of criminal prosecution simply for doing their jobs. I would like to pay tribute to all of them, for their courage, determination and professionalism,” he added.

Audience for the BBC’s Russian-language news website tripled its weekly average in recent days, reaching a record 10.7 million people in the last week (compared with the usual 3.1 million).

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Source: Elcomercio

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