RFE’s Tajik Service, Radio Ozodi, has received an award from the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) and the Media Alliance of Tajikistan (MAT) for its reporting on issues concerning press freedom and journalists’ rights in Tajikistan.
“Tajikistan is a very challenging environment for journalists,” says Radio Ozodi Service Director Sojida Djakhfarova. “It is a great honor to be recognized by our peers for our efforts to change this reality.”
Tajikistan ranked 169 out of 196 countries measured in Freedom House’s 2010 “Freedom of the Press” report.
The co-sponsor of the award, the Media Alliance of Tajikistan, is an influential and independent union of journalists founded in 2005 with the aim to aid the development of freedom of expression, media independence and plurality, as well as encourage dialogue between journalists and the authorities.
The award comes just months after Radio Ozodi was recognized
by the UN Development Program for its ground-breaking coverage of HIV/AIDS in Tajikistan.
Radio Ozodi also provided up-to-the-minute coverage of the detention of “BBC” correspondent Urunboy Usmonov, an ethnic Uzbek citizen of Tajikistan, who was held and later released by Tajikistan’s authorities in July.
“Our most important mission continues to be responsible journalism,” Djakhfarova explains, “In order to provide this vital service, our second mission has become the protection of journalists in Tajikistan.”
- Deana Kjuka
Read more in Tajik.