A senior UNESCO official said Sunday that the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization backs a scheme to set up Jordan's first independent radio station.
"UNESCO has asked the (state-run) press and publications authority to approve an initiative launched by the Nour al-Hussein charity organization to set up the radio station," acting director in Amman Giovanni Boccardi said.
"The station will serve listeners in rural areas in Jordan who will be able to tune in on FM wave lengths or the Internet and will deal namely with cultural and educational themes as well as women issues," Boccardi said.
Setting up the station will cost an estimated 47,000 dollars, with UNESCO footing 28,000 dollars and the Nour al-Hussein foundation.
It will transmit programs in Arabic and will be the first independent radio station in Jordan, where broadcast and television media is controlled by the state.
The head of the press and publications authority Hussein Abu Orabi said he referred the project to the Information Minister Taleb Rifai.
During a meeting with members of the foreign press club in Amman Thursday, Rifai told reporters that the government was considering paving the way for private radio and television stations in Jordan and working towards the privatization of the press.
Since 1998 Jordan has allowed two private radio stations -- MBC and Radio Monte-Carlo -- to transmit Arabic-language programs on the FM wave-length from Jordanian territory - AMMAN (AFP)
© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)