The President of the United States, Joe Biden, has sacked the heads of US media organizations appointed by former President Donald Trump.
Those affected in the mass sack on Saturday, include the acting chief of the US Agency for Global Media, and the directors of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Radio Free Asia and the Middle East Broadcasting Networks, The Independent reports.
Before now, Biden had also forced Trump’s pick to run the USAGM to resign within hours of resuming office, a move political analysts say was meant to start on a new footing without having any of Trump’s appointees around him.
The latest changes come just a day after the director of Voice of America and his deputy were removed and the chief of the Office of Cuba Broadcasting stood down.
The now former head of the USAGM, Michael Pack, had been accused by Democrats of trying to turn the networks into pro-Trump propaganda outfits.
All of those fired by the acting CEO of USAGM, Kelu Chao, were appointed by Pack in December after he claimed that its newsrooms were filled with anti-Trump journalists.
It is unclear if the firings of Victoria Coates of MEBN, Stephen Yates of RFA and Ted Lipien of RFE, will be subject to legal challenges but Chao was quoted as saying in a memo to staff before the sackings:
“We have a lot of work ahead of us: reaffirm the firewall, the highest standards of professionalism, and the sacred editorial independence and journalistic integrity; and ensure the safety and security of our journalists.”