Community Radio>>Licensing • El Salvador
When Radio Mangle went on air in the second week of January, it created history of sorts: it was the first time in El Salvador a community radio started broadcasting under its own licence.
In October, the state-run General Superintendence of Electricity and Telecommunications awarded the 106.1 FM frequency to a public agency, which transferred it to Radio Mangle.
The broadcast will reach 200 communities in south-east El Salvador. The region is among the most vulnerable to floods which cause fatalities every rainy season.
The emergence of community radios in El Salvador dates back to the end of a 12-year-old civil war in 1992. But these radios have faced troubles for lacking permits; some radio stations have been closed down and the staff violently evicted from their premises by the police. A 1997 law allows community radio stations to operate, but they must acquire their frequencies through public auctions, putting them at a disadvantage with respect to business media groups. “This is a historic moment,” radio presenter Mario Martínez, a Radio Mangle spokesperson told news agency IPS.
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