Archive | November, 2003

University for “Peace” Cracking down on RFPI, claiming immunity from laws

The University is cutting the phone lines and not letting reporters anywhere near the studios of Radio For Peace International, so the flow of information is restricted, and will probably come through more informal channels for the moment.

Here’s the latest update, forwarded to me from the Free Pacifica list:

From: Chuck Scurich

Sent: Monday, November 03, 2003 6:11 PM

About 2 hours ago today (Monday) I received a call from the general Manager of Radio for Peace INternational (via cell phone).

He, James Lathem, told me that the United Nation’s University for Peace has begun today to use agressive means to force the shut down of this progressive radio station in Costa Rica.

At noon they cut off the water supply to the remaining 8 staff and volunteers holed up in the building.

Four hours later the University cut the telephone lines.

The security guards have turned away reporters and cameramen who have come out to try to enter the campus.

Since the University is owned by the United Nations, they are claiming immunity from all laws and law enforcement; the station has little power against this major act of censorship.

Radio for Peace International is the only shortwave radio station that airs Democracy Now, Free Speech Radio News, Alternative Radio, Counterspin, Making Contact, Radio Nation, TUC Radio, and many more.

These programs are heard in every part of the world, at least 120 countries of the world. This is an outrage. Please spread the word and write to Koffi Annan at the United Nations ( to intervene.

If anyone can assist these folks in any way possible, these people who provide us, the world, with this important media resource, please, now is the time.

Chuck Scurich

Oakland, CA

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Global Community Radio Forced To Move by University for Peace

I received the latest update in the ongoing struggle between global shortwave community broadcaster Radio For Peace International and its landlord, the United Nations chartered University for Peace. Unfortunately, the news is not good (but there are glimmers of hope):

10/30/29 – The Copy Exchange – The University for Peace (UPaz) gave little ground to Radio for Peace International in negotiation that took place over the last few months over compensation to RFPI for their $200,000 facilities and for the cost of moving the station. UPaz would only set up an escrow account containing a tiny percentage of what is owed the station – money that RFPI cannot access. RFPI walked away for the talks empty handed, forced to relocate but penniless to do so.

UPaz officials stated that RFPI must vacate their facilities by October 31st or face legal action, though it is unclear what form that action might take, since Costa Rican law does not apply to international land, such as UPaz property.

Regardless, RFPI does plan to move and is determined to keep their dream alive. Land outside San Jose has been donated to RFPI, a deed being drawn up to transfer ownership to the station. From a newly established office in San Jose, capable of containing the studios, RFPI will be able to live stream their programming over the Internet during the three to six month period required to set up the transmitter and tower at the new location.

Once the transmitter is established RFPI begin broadcasts again using a studio-to-transmitter link from the San Jose studio.

UPaz reportedly is planning to make use of the present RFPI facilities, for which they offered nothing in monetary consideration, for their own purposes.


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