VOA Weekly Programming Highlights: December 7, 2022

VOA’s Coverage of U.S., NATO Response to the Latest Russian Attacks Resonates with Audience

VOA’s on-the-ground coverage of the U.S./NATO response garnered tens of thousands of views and interactions on digital platforms and was widely republished by affiliates in Ukraine and Georgia. Coverage featured live reporting from the NATO summit in Bucharest and exclusive interviews with U.S. lawmakers Jim Costa (D-CA), Victoria Spartz (R-IN), Marcy Kaptur (D-OH), Rob Portman (R-OH), James Risch (R-ID) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), who reiterated additional military, economic and humanitarian support. According to Costa, U.S. support for Ukraine is the frontline of this battle and the test of our time as to whether or not democracies will prevail. Other exclusive interviews included Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs, who told VOA NATO should provide long-range missiles for Ukraine, and U.S. Ambassador to Moldova Kent Logsdon, who expressed concern about the impact of Russian disinformation on the people of Moldova. A report from a refugee center in Chisinau showed the impact of the war on Ukrainian refugees.

VOA’s Coverage of Russia’s Winter War Campaign Engages the Audience

NATO’s secretary-general said Russia’s president is using winter as a weapon of war by targeting Ukraine’s energy infrastructure with missile strikes. Cindy Saine’s story about NATO vowing to help Ukrainians survive the winter drew more than 29,280 views on YouTube, while updates on the war in the Latest Developments in Ukraine news blog attracted 20,000 article views this week. A News Center report showing Russian public support for the war dropping, from 80 percent in April to 25 percent currently, drew more than 6,250 article views, and another story about Russia investing its military might in the battle for Bakhmut in eastern Ukraine got more than 4,340 article views on the voanews.com website.

VOA Mandarin Continues to Engage Audiences with Wide-Ranging Coverage of Protests in China

From in-depth analysis of China’s relaxation of some COVID rules to coverage of rallies overseas in support of protesters, VOA Mandarin’s comprehensive, original reporting on the aftermath of the recent protests scored big with audiences. Among the hits was Mandarin’s interview with a mainland student protesting in Hong Kong which received 402,000 views on Twitter. Expert analysis of the loosening of Xi Jinping’s zero-COVID policy was also popular, with 124,000 views on YouTube overnight. In addition, a program discussing Beijing’s increased surveillance got 226,000 YouTube views within hours.

VOA Program Praised by Zambian Health Authorities

A recent episode of the English-to-Africa radio program, Up Front, that covered the COVID-19 vaccination drive in Zambia was recognized by health authorities in the country. The guest on the program, Dr. Muka Chikuba-McLeod, Country Director of Zambia, was contacted by the Zambia Ministry of Health to say ‘Thank You’ for spotlighting the vaccination drive in the country which led to 70 percent of citizens being vaccinated. During the interview, Dr. Chikuba-McLeod described community-based efforts that the USAID DISCOVER-Health project applied to get people vaccinated while working together with local and country leaders.

Reporting on Mexican Authorities’ Dismantling Of Border Migrant Camp Attracts Significant Audience

Mexican police attempting to clear illegal migrant camps along the Rio Grande in Ciudad Juárez got pushback from about 500 mostly Venezuelan, but also Central American and Cuban migrants seeking entry to the United States. Authorities said they were moving migrants to shelters, but many didn’t want to leave the area. Correspondent César Contreras captured the violent exchange, which got nearly 1 million views across social media platforms and generated the most engagement of any video in the past 30 days, with more than 600 likes and 300 comments.

VOA Deewa Story on Eco-Friendly Innovation Very Popular With Viewers

A Pakistani scientist spoke to VOA Deewa about his innovative design of a kiln machine which could significantly benefit the environment and produce quake-resistant bricks. “Brick kiln traditional industry in Pakistan is a significant source of pollution because of the coal fire, but my 20 years of research has resolved the problem reducing the air pollution by 90%,” Dr. Arbab Safeer Ahmad, Founding Director of Centre for Material Sciences at Islamia College in Peshawar, told VOA Deewa. The video report generated 1.2 million views and 36,000 reactions on Facebook.

High Audience Interest in Interview with Iranian Soccer Legend Ali Karimi

On the day Iran was eliminated from the FIFA World Cup by Team USA, VOA Persian aired and posted on all digital platforms the acquired hour-long interview with Iranian soccer legend Ali Karimi. Karimi, one of the most popular athletes in Iran’s history, disclosed that he and his family received death threats and harassment from the Iranian government after openly supporting the women-led protests. And from Qatar, Ali Emadi reported on the Iranian spectators’ reactions before and after the U.S.-Iran soccer match. Total audience engagement on all digital platforms for this programming surpassed 3,765,700.

VOA Programming Highlights are compiled based on information available from multiple sources at the time of posting. This information constantly evolves. If you intend to cite to information posted in VOA Highlights, please consult VOA Public Relations at publicrelations@voanews.com to ensure it is accurate and current.

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