News In Brief

New Cuban radio station to counter Radio Marti

A new 24-hour Cuban radio station is to start broadcasting later this month in what Western observers see as a move to lessen the possible impact of Radio Marti, it was announced Tuesday.

Cuba's Communist authorities said Radio Rebelde (Rebel) will start AM broadcast band transmissions March 26 and that it would have an open format of music, commentaries, drama, and news.

Radio Marti, a US government-backed station in Florida designed to give Cubans an alternative news source, is expected to start beaming to Cuba by the middle of next month. The Cuban government has denounced it as ''an invasion of national sovereignty'' and is considering its response, which could include interfering with domestic American radio broadcasts.

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