Rebel region TV operator to rebroadcast pro-government Moldovan TV channel
Sunday, October 28th, 2007

Excerpt from report by Moldovan news agency Basapress

Chisinau, 26 October: Sheriff, the largest cable TV operator in Moldova’s breakaway Dniester region, will rebroadcast the Moldovan [pro-government private] NIT TV channel starting from 1 November 2007.

According to a press release issued by Sheriff, Dniester region residents will have an opportunity to watch a TV channel from the right bank of the Dniester River if they are Sheriff’s subscribers.

“So far, we have operated in the MMDS format which allows rebroadcasting up to 24 channels. A poll conducted by the company shows that our customers wish to have access to more channels. As a result, starting from 1 November we will use the digital format which will allow us rebroadcasting up to 192 TV channels,” the statement said.

Contacted by Basapress, a member of the Moldovan Audio Visual Council [a media watchdog], Valeriu Soltan, said that now only those living within 10 to 30 km from the so-called Dniester region border can receive the signal of several Moldovan TV channels over the air.

[Passage omitted: details]

Sheriff says it covers all Dniester towns and districts apart from [northern] Camenca District.

[NIT TV director general Sergiu Batog has said that Sheriff pledged to make no changes to NIT programmes. He described the agreement reached by NIT and Sheriff as a step towards creating a single information area between the two banks of the Dniester River. A so-called “information war” has been going on between Moldova and the Dniester region for more than 10 years, with no Moldovan cable TV operator including any Dniester TV channels in its packages and vice a versa, the Moldovan news agency Infotag reported at 1435 gmt on 26 Oct 07] .

(Source: Basapress news agency, Chisinau, in Moldovan 1130gmt 26 Oct 07 via BBC Monitoring)