Monday, March 16, 2015

DW's Amharic service turns 50

(Mar 16, 2015, (Deutsche Welle))--On March 15, 1965, Deutsche Welle's first Amharic radio program for Ethiopia went on the air. Ever since, the Amharic service has accompanied millions of listeners through Ethiopia's turbulent history. In retrospect, the first broadcast on March 15, 1965, appeared to underpin the state in much the same manner that the protocol at Emperor Haile Selassie's court did.

DW started broadcasting from Cologne, but later moved to Bonn
Even before Deutsche Welle's new Amharic service was to be introduced officially, the ambassador of the Ethiopian empire was given the opportunity to address shortwave radio listeners on the Horn of Africa. The start of the service would bring a "ray of light" to Ethiopia, he announced.

It did not take long before the first letter from a listener reached the broadcasting house. Because it was located in Cologne at the time, Ethiopians also refer to DW as "Radio Cologne" to this day. "Many greetings and many thanks for the Amharic program. Ever since you have begun broadcasting, I always listen in. I hope you have even more air time in the future," Abdul Mamna Hassan wrote. Read more from Deutsche Welle »

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