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Communication and Information Sector's news service

UNESCO Iraq Office supports media as a vehicle for dialogue and reconciliation

26-09-2007 (Amman)
UNESCO Iraq Office supports media as a vehicle for dialogue and reconciliation
Iraki TV: UNESCO provided
equipment and trained staff.
The UNESCO Iraq Office, in line with the new Security Council Resolution on the expanded mandate of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), is committed to supporting the national reconciliation process by building the capacity of the Iraqi media sector.
The expanded UN role in Iraq broadens the responsibilities of UNAMI to assist the Iraqi Government in advancing an “inclusive, national dialogue and political reconciliation.”

At a time of increasing sectarian conflict in Iraq, media can serve as a platform for dialogue that promotes reconciliation and peaceful solutions.

“Journalists working in highly polarised and partisan contexts are pressured to take sides in the conflict, further aggravating divisions,” said Mohamed Djelid, Director of the UNESCO Iraq office.

UNESCO Iraq is developing a project that will train Iraqi media professionals on using media to facilitate dialogue and developing programme content on issues of democracy, tolerance and reconciliation.

“The media has a positive role to play in post-conflict situations,” continued Mr Djelid. “Editors and media managers can facilitate dialogue by setting up structures that are conducive to managing phone-ins, letters to the editor and hosting balanced debates.”

UNESCO, as the only UN agency with a mandate to defend freedom of expression, strongly supports the Iraqi government and the Iraqi media in the development of a national media and communication policy that promotes freedom of expression, respect for free and sustainable media and free access to information in line with internationally recognized standards.

Other recent activities include a UNESCO-led awareness raising campaign on the dangerous working conditions of journalists, and technical support provided to the Iraqi government during the constitutional review process to help guarantee freedom of expression and access to information.
Related themes/countries

      · Training of Media Professionals: News Archives 2007
      · Freedom of Expression: News Archives 2007
      · News Archives: 2007
      · Media in Conflict and Post-Conflict Situations: News Archives 2007
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