|Type||Broadcast radio, television and online|
|Headquarters||Umayyad Square, Damascus|
|Owner||Government of Syria|
The General Organization of Radio and TV (Arabic: الهيئة العامة للإذاعة والتلفزيون), also known in French as Organisation de la Radio et la Télévision Arabe Syrienne (in short ORTAS), is the state and public broadcaster in Syria and reports to the Ministry of Information. Earlier names were Radio and Television (RTV Syria) and Syrian Radio & Television (SRT).
The legal basis is a legislative decree from 2010, which, however, was largely not implemented. Sūmar Wassūf became head of the commission in December 2018.
Several television channels and radio stations are being run by this organization, including Syria TV and Damascus Radio. ORTAS is an active member of the Arab States Broadcasting Union (ASBU), associate member of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and formerly a member of International Radio and Television Organisation (OIRT).
The General Authority for Radio and Television is the governmental body responsible for radio and television broadcasting in Syria. It is divided into two parts:
See also: List of radio stations in Syria
Radio broadcasting began in the First Syrian Republic upon its independence on 17 April 1946 on shortwave. As early as 1942, Radio Damas, a counterpart to Radio Levant in Beirut, Lebanon existed in the French League of Nations mandate.
Nationwide radio programs include:
Former radio station:
Regional radio programs are (from north to south):
The international broadcaster Radio Damascus has existed since 1957. According to the frequency announcements in the program, both FM (VHF) and AM (medium wave) are broadcast.
Further information: Television in Syria
The television station is based in Damascus, Syria since July 1960. The channel airs programmes in Arabic, English and French. It was broadcast in black and white until 1976. A second channel was added in 1985 (discontinued in 2012 due to the civil war) and in 1996, the satellite service Syria TV began broadcasting. On September 5, 2012, Syrian Television channel broadcasts were broken off on Arabsat and Nilesat, including Syria TV. Syria TV and Syrian Drama TV broadcasts were stopped on Hot Bird on October 22, 2012.
The digital television switchover (DVB-T) in Syria has been restarted since mid-2018, in the provinces of Damascus, Daraa, As Suwayda, Rif Dimashq, Tartus, Latakia, Quneitra and Hama, however there is still no date for an analog disconnect.
ORTAS national and satellite television channels:
Former channels include Syrian Medical TV and Talaqie TV which both closed in 2016; terrestrial channels Channel 2 and Channel 1 (now Syrian local channel) closed down in 2012.
The Syria Insider Weekly program is broadcast in English, French and Spanish. Russian television news is broadcast daily.