Boston Globe to close foreign bureaus

Posted on February 24, 2012

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BOSTON  — The Boston Globe will close its three remaining international bureaus in Jerusalem, Berlin and Bogota, Colombia, the newspaper has announced.

The move, detailed in a memo to staff from the newspaper’s editor, Martin Baron, was announced Jan. 23 after the Globe’s parent company, The New York Times Co., said it would eliminate about 125 positions through buyouts and other steps at the Globe and the Telegram & Gazette of Worcester.

Baron said the four people who work in the bureaus would be offered positions in Boston.

“Continuing to bear the expense of our foreign bureaus would have required us to reduce staffing by a dozen or so positions beyond those already announced,” Baron wrote. “We concluded that it would be unwise to meet the newsroom’s financial targets by making additional staff reductions.”

Al Larkin, the Globe’s executive vice president, said the closures would save more than $1 million annually.

The paper would continue to send reporters overseas for special projects and breaking news, but wanted to reduce the overhead in maintaining the bureaus, he said.

Larkin said the closures, expected to be completed within the next couple months, were a response to decreased circulation and advertising revenues.

“I think that we’re going to continue to look at operating our entire organization as efficiently as we can,” Larkin said. “I don’t anticipate any (other) major changes, particularly in our newsroom.”

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