The International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) is a federation of national associations of certified radio amateurs, representing over 150 countries and separate territories around the world.

The three IARU Regions are organised to broadly mirror the structure of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) and its related regional telecommunications organisations. The Regions comprise:
- IARU Region 1: Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Northern Asia
- IARU Region 2: The Americas
- IARU Region 3: Asia-Pacific

The IARU represents the interests of the Amateur Radio Service worldwide to relevant international organisations, promoting the interests of amateur radio and seeking to protect and enhance its spectrum privileges.

International Amateur Radio Union - Region 1

News Release 23rd General Conference

The 23rd General Conference of IARU Region 1 opened on Sunday 21 September 2014 with 43 Member Societies present at Conference and 17 Member Societies represented by proxies. The Conference was held at the Flamingo Grand Hotel in the Albena Resort, north of Varna in Bulgaria and hosted by the Bulgarian Federation of Radio Amateurs (BFRA).

Progress was made at the conference on a number of topics that are of key concern to radio amateurs. This came from getting people together over several days and facing them with the realities that we need to protect our spectrum as well as address the declining numbers of active Radio Amateurs. It was heartening to see the real progress made by Lisa Leenders, PA2LS, the Region 1 Youth Coordinator in this latter respect. 

The Conference reviewed the strategy of IARU Region 1, its finances and membership. Other matters reviewed includes the work of a number of permanent Committees, Working Groups and coordinators, including EMC, Political Relations, Emergency Communications, Youth, ARDF, Development of Amateur Radio in developing countries, Spectrum development and protection via ITU, CEPT and the World Radiocommunication Conferences (External Relations Committee), Intruder Watch, Space and High Speed Telegraphy. 

Of particular importance was the amendment of the Terms of Reference for the EMC and Political Relations Committees that now provides a clear requirement for Region 1 to lobby at political, governmental and business levels on matters of EMC and related legislation and standards.

Conference also reviewed policy in the key spectrum areas of LF/HF and VHF/UHF/Microwave. Discussions extended over a range of areas, including band planning, contest, remote working and innovative developments in the areas of satellites and digital TV. The position on future World Communications Conferences was also discussed.

Conference considered and made recommendations in the areas of trans-border QSL management, responsible QSLing, malicious QRM, Youth initiatives, copyright and article reproduction and CW procedures. 

A full report of the proceedings of the final Plenary will be published in due course on the IARU Region 1 web site at www.iaru-r1.org

The Region 1 Roy Stevens, G2BVN, Memorial Trophy was awarded to Gaston Bertels, ON4WF, for his meritorious service to amateur radio over many years. Gaston was the chairman of the Eurocom Working Group and then the chairman of the ARSPEX Working Group. 

A new Executive Committee was elected during the Final Plenary of the 23rd IARU Region 1 General Conference. The Executive Committee for 2014 to 2017, who will start their term of office on 31 October 2014, are

  • President: Don Beattie, G3BJ
  • Vice President: Faisal Al-Ajmi, 9K2RR
  • Treasurer: Eva Thiemann, HB9FPM
  • Secretary: Dennis Green, ZS4BS
  • Members: Thilo Kootz, DL9KCE; David Court, EI3IO; Oliver Tabakovski, Z32TO; Ivan Stauning, OZ7IS and Ranko Boca, 4O3A

The 24th IARU Region 1 General Conference will be held in September 2017 in Wildbad Kreuth, near Munich, Germany, hosted by the DARC.

 

The 23rd IARU Region 1 General Conference opens in Albena, Bulgaria

The First Plenary of the 23rd IARU Region 1 General Conference was opened at 10:30 on Sunday 21 September 2014 in the Grand Hall of the Flamingo Grand Hotel, Albena, Bulgaria.

The message of Dr Kristalina Georgieva, European Union Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response was read by Mr Encho Gospodinov.

“Dear IARU Conference participants,

Dear radio messengers in times of trouble and hope

Friends, ladies and gentlemen,

It is my pleasure and privilege to address your General Conference. The timing for your gathering could not be more indicative for the world we live in and the challenges we all face today.

The lives of millions of people is impacted by troubling events: conflicts in Africa and the Middle East (and sadly, in Europe); natural disasters all over the world with all the un-predictabilities of the mother Nature and the responsibilities of the human beings for the Climate Change; human waves of migrants and refugees moving from one place to another, and assorted diseases often trailing the disasters and conflicts. In short, this is a world, which does not stop to surprise us every morning when we open the TV screen or a newspaper.

At the same time, the world has never been better connected and wired. Today\'s communications are a real miracle once considered a fantasy coming from the novels of Arthur Clarke or Rey Bradbury. Never before, we had this privilege to transmit or exchange information with such accuracy, speed and scope of distribution. And never before so many people from all corners of the world and all layers of the society had access to this information. The arrival of internet really made our planet a Global village and ever since our live changed forever in the way we deal with information. Politics, diplomacy, journalism, technology, science, research, banking, literally all changed overnight with this powerful instrument.

However, there are moments in life when a good, stable, reliable and independent information tool is the only one we can use to save lives. And this is the one we call simply the RADIO.

Imagine a major natural disaster, which knocks down all modern information tools in the affected area: with no electricity, no internet, no telephone and fax connections, not even the old telex machines. No trains and ships moving, no roads to use or airports functioning. Nothing. We know a tragedy has happened, we know many are dead, and even more still alive, but trapped and helpless. And no one can help them as nobody knows what has happened. Because there is no information.

Luckily, there is a last resort: the radio amateurs; the people who are the eyes and the ears of the world in time when all other information channels are silent. "Amateurs" is actually not the right word in this case: these are professional communicators who are listening to the heartbeat of the planet and registering the emotional vibrations of people who may be in danger. In short, you are the last technical miracle, which is independent, reliable information channel, which can transmit an important piece of news from any place in the world, any time, by anyone who knows how to operate this wonderful creature, called radio.

Your advantage is that you are independent. A well-trained radioman with good equipment and ever-charged batteries can be a fantastic link between two villages, two countries or two continents. When organized in a Union, you are a communication superpower in time of total electronic darkness. But the most important part of your equipment is the people you have; the Bravehearts of men and women listening to people who may be in danger and may need help; the professional live-savers called strangely amateurs, who nevertheless act as volunteers when and where they are needed.

In your history, you have many examples of lives being saved because some of your members caught a signal from a village, a region or un-accessible place that someone needs help. We need your skills and services because we will have more and more disasters in the future. The dry statistics reveal troubling trends: during the last 20 - 30 years, the number and the intensity of the natural disasters have increased dramatically. So did the number of people killed or affected. The earthquake in Haiti in 2010 killed 230 000 people alone ….  Between 2003 and 2012, some 6 700 disasters hit the planet with 2005 being the darkest one – 810 disasters in one year. Typhoons in the Philippines, floods in Pakistan, China or Europe, droughts and famine in Africa, garnished with conflicts, are now almost daily events. The economic losses from these disasters went up from $ 50 billion to $ 200 billion a year since the 80s.

Every Red Cross volunteer will tell you that during a disaster the most needed and precious live saving element is not food, water or medicines. It is the timely, accurate information that is the most needed. As timely and accurate information saves lives, prevents major tragedies, stops rumours, which create panic and leads to even more casualties. This is how solid information flow becomes the backbone of a successful communication strategy. In short, everything, which you do and helps your societies to organise themselves better, is vital. Local and national authorities count on you as the last bastion of reliable information channel. Your professional skills and your humanitarian duties make you more than radio amateurs; you are truly needed guardians in time of troubles and I hope you will always stay as a pillar of hope and courage for all who are in danger.

Thank you for your noble work. I wish you every success in this Conference.”

Kristalina Georgieva

A new 5 MHz frequency for South Africa

The South African Radio League has requested the South African Regulator, ICASA, to change the beacon frequency from 5 250 to 5 290 kHz to line it up with the same allocations in Europe and other countries. This will greatly enhance the coverage of South African beacons. ICASA has agreed to this and this week changed the licence to 5 290 kHz. The change over to the new frequency is effective 4 October 2014.

IARU Region 1 Outstanding Ham Youth Award

At the IARU Region 1 General Conference at Sun City in 2011, a recommendation was accepted that an IARU Region 1 Youth Coordinator be appointed; that Member Societies appoint youth co-ordinators and/or youth working groups; that Youth related information and material will be shared amongst societies through the Region 1 web site, and to establish an annual youth recognition award.

During March 2014, a call went out for nominations of the first Region 1 Outstanding Ham Youth Award and in May 2014, the nominations closed. Three nominations were received for the award - Ángel Galván, EA3HSI, Todor Todorov, LZ2005, and Mitchel Mynhardt ZS6YH.

Seven Youth Coordinators completed the jury score sheet and Mitchel, ZS6YH, was selected as the first recipient of the Region 1 Outstanding Ham Youth Award 2013.

The Region 1 Outstanding Ham Youth Award 2013 was presented to Mitchel, ZS6YH, at the Radio Technology in Action Symposium held at the Innovation Hub in Pretoria, by Dennis, ZS4BS, the Region 1 Secretary.

Congratulations, Mitchel!

From left to right: Louis Schnetler, ZU6LG, Koos Fick (ZSL-5182), Mitchel Mynhardt, ZS6YH, Enrico van der Walt (ZSL-5250) and Dennis Green, ZS4BS. Koos and Enrico will be writing the Radioamateur Examination on 16 October 2014.

Albena 2014

Delegates from all over the world are on their way to Albena, Bulgaria to attend the 23rd IARU Region 1 Conference to be held  21 – 27 September 2014. 

The website for the 2014 IARU Region 1 General Conference is available at http://iarur1con2014.bfra.bg/

 

LZ14IARU

From 18 to 26 September 2014, the special call sign LZ14IARU will be active from the Grand Flamingo Hotel in Albena, Bulgaria. The triennial General Conference of IARU Region 1 is being held in Albena from 21 to 27 September 2014. QSL via the bureau.

5 MHz and even more 5 MHz

As a result of representation from the national society URE Spain has gained an extension of the use of several 5 MHz frequencies. Due to expire at the end of June 2014 permission has now been granted to use 5268, 5295, 5313, 5382, 5430 and 5439 kHz until 30th November 2015 with a power of 100W PEP.   Frequencies are thought to be USB dial frequencies.

The Andorran Society URA reports that permission has been granted the use of 5275-5450 kHz until a decision is made at WRC-15.   Permitted power is 100W PEP using CW and SSB with transmission bandwidths not to exceed 3 kHz.

Portugal now has the use of a channel at 5380.5 kHz in addition to those at 5288.5, 5371.5 and 5403.5 kHz.   This is thought to align with the Spanish channel listed as 5382 kHz.

Member Societies are asked to notify either PB2T or G3PSM of any developments concerning 5 MHz.

Written by Colin Thomas, G3PSM