Uzbekistan launches 24-hour TV news channel


TASHKENT -- Uzbekistan Monday (July 24) launched its first ever 24-hour news channel in a move seen as the latest sign of a thaw in the reclusive nation since Shavkat Mirziyoyev became president last year.

Mirziyoyev, who took over after the death of long-time ruler Islam Karimov, has repeatedly criticised the ex-Soviet state's tightly controlled media.

Officials have discussed allowing organisations such as the BBC and Human Rights Watch back into the country after lengthy bans.

The state-run channel Uzbekistan-24 aims to "bring objective and reliable information to the population" and will broadcast in Uzbek, Russian and English, a statement on its website said.

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