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China launches Tibetan channel for India, Nepal
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October 01, 2007 16:58 IST

China launched the first-ever 24-hour Tibetan language television channel on Monday to mark its 58th National Day.

The channel would not only cater to the needs of the local population but also for Tibetans living in India and Nepal.

The Tibet Television Station has also become China's first TV channel broadcasting round the clock in minority languages.

The new service was upgraded from the previous Tibetan-language channel which broadcast 21 hours a day, deputy editor-in-chief with the Tibet TV Station, Gongbu Suolang said.

The channel only broadcast 11 hours a day when it was opened in 1999.

"It was first launched as a means to better serve the Tibetan people and preserve their language," he said.

The channel mainly targets local peasants and herdsmen, accounting for about 80 per cent of the 2.8 million Tibetan population in southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region, as well as overseas Tibetans in India and Nepal, Gongbu said.

The channel hosts programmes covering local news reporting, Tibetan folk music and dance, and TV series translated into the Tibetan language.

"The reason why we decided to lengthen the broadcasting time is because we want to offer better service to the viewers, especially for those living in Nepal and India. You know, there is a time difference," Gongbu was quoted as saying by Xinhua news agency.

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