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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

BBC in Central Asia, Caucasus

LONDON -- The BBC World Service launched a radio service Wednesday that will broadcast to eight former Soviet republics.

World Service managing director Sam Younger said the new service would broadcast for four hours every day to a region of Central Asia and the Caucasus that is considerably larger than Western Europe.

The new service will broadcast in Azeri, Uzbek and Russian to Kazakh-stan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyz-stan, Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan, Armenia and Georgia.

Behrouz Afagh-Tabrizi, head of the service, said he hoped to reach an audience of around 2 million listeners in the first two years of broadcasting.

He said the service represented the single biggest development project undertaken by the World Service in its current three-year funding period.