UN opens doors for day-long talk radio event

4 June 2009

More than one dozen United States talk radio hosts from across the political spectrum converged on the United Nations today to give their listeners an insight into the inner workings of the world body.

On the fourth annual Talk Radio Day at the UN, the hosts – from WWRL New York, Air America, ABC News and other channels – camped out in the lobby of the landmark Secretariat building in New York, interviewing a host of UN officials and diplomats.

On top of giving journalists access to many interviewees, the event serves to allow people to “get a broader understanding of the different organs, the different people that make up this Organization,” said Mark Goldberg, lead writer for the “UN Dispatch” blog, who posted video clips of the many interviews he conducted throughout the day on his site.

Aside from the hot topics of the day, he said that his talks touched on subjects such as ecological pressures around Lake Chad and the Aral Sea, which don’t “get a lot of press and play but are obvious very important issues.”

Those making appearances on air today included the Permanent Representative of the United Kingdom, and Under-Secretary-General for Communications and Public Information Kiyo Akasaka, along with staffers from such UN agencies as the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the UN Education, Cultural and Scientific Organization (UNESCO).

Also squeezing as many interviews as possible into the day-long event was Victoria Jones of the Talk Radio News Service, which is sending its information out to the 400 radio stations it works with.

“It’s going to be a long day,” she said at the start of the event, in anticipation of speaking to as many people as she could to shed light for her listeners on what the UN is doing “to help ensure the progress of peace, democracy and justice around the world.”


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