Baghdad Radio's 88-year legacy shines on International Day

Baghdad Radio's 88-year legacy shines on International Day

Shafaq News/ On February 13, radio stations worldwide celebrate International Day, marking 130 years since establishing the first radio station in Europe.

The Day was established by UNESCO in 2011 and later endorsed by the United Nations General Assembly in 2012 as an international day.


The inception of Radio is commonly attributed to Guglielmo Marconi's first radio transmission in 1895. Experimental radio broadcasting, targeting a broader audience with music and talk, emerged around 1905-1906.

Commercially, Radio gained traction in the early 1920s. Radio stations were established nearly three decades later, and the radio and broadcasting system became a ubiquitous commodity globally by the 1950s.

In 2011, UNESCO Member States designated February 13 as World Radio Day. The United Nations General Assembly officially recognized it as an international event in 2013.


Acknowledged as one of the most widely consumed mediums worldwide, the UN underscores the Radio's capacity to "shape a society's experience of diversity, stand as an arena for all voices to speak out, be represented and heard."

Radio has a unique ability to reach the most people, promoting diversity in societies and serving as a platform for everyone to express, represent, and listen to one another.

According to various international reports, Radio continues to be one of the most trusted and widely used media worldwide.

World Radio Day 2024 Theme

The theme for World Radio Day, celebrated on February 13, 2024, is "Radio: A century informing, entertaining, and educating."

The United Nations emphasizes, "The 2024 observance highlights the history of Radio and its powerful impact on news, drama, music, and sports. It also recognizes the ongoing practical value as a portable public safety net during emergencies and power outages, caused by natural and human-made disasters, such as storms, earthquakes, floods, heat, wildfires, accidents, and warfare."

"Furthermore, the continuing democratic value of Radio is to serve as a grassroots catalyst for connectedness within underserved groups, including immigrant, religious, minority, and poverty-stricken populations."

Radio in Iraq

Baghdad Radio, launched in 1936, became the second Arab radio station after Egypt's Voice of Arabs.

It began broadcasting on July 1, 1936, in the presence of then-King of Iraq, Ghazi I.

Among the prominent voices at Baghdad Radio were early presenters Hussein Al-Kilani and Mohammed Abdul Latif, along with the first Iraqi singer, Mohammed Al-Qubanchi, monologist Aziz Ali, and singer Salima Morad, also known as Salima Pasha. Additionally, Iraqi Jewish artist Saleh Al-Kuwaiti performed some compositions on the oud.

Despite all the advanced technologies, Radio remains an effective means of celebrating humanity and its rich diversity. It provides a platform for spreading democratic discourse and remains one of the most widely used and distributed media globally, according to a United Nations report.

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