Public youth radio director suspended

The board of the State LLC "Latvijas Radio" (Latvian Radio) has put Pieci.lv radio director Kārlis Dagilis under scrutiny, likely for the strong language used during a rap music show on the public youth radio channel, suspending him from work during the inquiry. The work of the main music and content directors is to be evaluated as well.

Kārlis Dagilis was suspended on July 15 and his fate as channel director for Pieci.lv is to be decided by July 30. 

Previously Mārtiņš Pavasaris, the director of the program where strong language was used, was suspended from Pieci.lv after he repeatedly failed preventing swear words being used on the broadcast.

Besides being a reason for reviewing Dagilis' work, the swearing on the youth show was, nominally, among the motives for the dismissal of Ainārs Dimants, chairman of the board of the National Electronic Mass Media Council (NEMMC), Latvia's broadcast watchdog. 

A number of MPs expressed indignation about swearing on the rap music show, while the NEMMC wrote a strongly worded letter claiming that the politicians' involvement amounts to a tampering with the independence of the public media.

As well as acting as broadcast watchdog with the power to take action if illegal or inappropriate material is broadcast, the NEMMC is also in overall charge of the funding of public broadcasting in Latvia, including the LSM news portals in Latvian, Russian and English.

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