Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Ukrainians lose 30m and part of 20m

This announcement seems to have slipped under the radar so thanks to Dan, KB6NU for the news that according to a Ukrainian National Commission for Radio Regulations press release, Ukrainian radio amateurs are no longer allowed the use of 30m, the top 100KHz of 20m, nor any of the amateur bands from 23cm and up.

I asked my Ukrainian wife Olga to read the original press release, and she could not find any reason given for the ban. I am quite shocked at this news. I often work Ukrainian amateurs on the 30m band. Why should the Ukrainian government suddenly take away the use of bands that have been allowed for many years, even under the Soviet regime, and which are allowed in all the surrounding countries? What use do they plan for these frequencies, that preclude operation by Ukrainian amateurs, and how will this affect the rest of us? I think that the national radio societies in Europe and elsewhere should make the strongest possible protest to the Ukrainian government for denying the use of frequencies agreed by international convention to be part of the amateur service to its citizens.

I have spent time in Ukraine and found Ukrainians to be some of the warmest, friendliest people anywhere. Unfortunately, Ukraine has one of the most corrupt and incompetent governments of any country on the planet. Politicians of all parties seem more concerned with exploiting their power for personal gain, and show little concern for the welfare or ordinary citizens. The current nationalist government creates friction with Ukraine's natural ally, Russia, while Europe shows no desire to invite a country with so many problems into the EU.

Living with the loss of a few amateur bands is not the biggest problem facing many Ukrainians today. On the other hand, one would have thought that the Ukrainian government had more important matters to be concerning itself with.
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