Thanks to a tip from Artur at Maresme DX I tuned in to a program of Radio Andorre. This program, broadcast via Kall-Krekel at 3985 kHz, told about the history of Radio Andorra. I really recommend to visit their website to get acquainted with the history of this radio icon. Unfortunately there no stations other than on FM in Andorra these days. So it is difficult to get anything else than an amateur radio QSL from this tiny mountain country in the Pyrenees.
In 1939 Jacques Tremoulet, who owned several private stations in France, founded Radio Andorra. The main reason for this was that he feared prohibition of his stations in France whereas the country (principality) of Andorra had a special – independent – status.
During WWII, thanks to the neutrality of Andorra, the station continued broadcasting without control from neither France nor Germany. But after the liberation of France problems started for Radio Andorra. Tremoulet was accused of collaboration for his attempts to preserve his stations in the occupied territory. He was sentenced to death and sought refuge in Spain and Switzerland until he was acquitted in 1949.
That did not put an end to the “war” between the French government and Radio Andorra. Aiming for full control over radio in France the government initially jammed the station with transmitters in Bordeaux and Paris. When the court found this unlawful the French government decided it was better to beat Radio Andorra through competition. Ultimately this resulted in the start of Radio des Vallée, later renamed to Sud Radio in Andorra. But not after the French government closed the border with Andorra for a year to frustrate the operation of Radio Andorra and to put pressure on Andorra to allow construction of this new station. In 1961 both stations got a license to operate for a period of 20 years.
In 1981 the government of Andorra decided not to renew the contracts of Radio Andorra and Sud Radio, as they wanted to establish their own radio company… And that was the end of medium and shortwave broadcasting from Andorra. Fortunately I have my QSLs and I can say that I traveled through Andorra, crossing the Port d’Envalira with my wife on bicycle…. but that was, like my QSLs, years ago.