Iraq looks to press freedom

Journalism associations discuss future of Iraqi and Arab press industry

  • E-Mail
By  John Irish Published  April 27, 2003

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and the Federation of Arab Journalists, ended on April 23 a media summit in Rabat, Morocco demanding for the creation of a new media order in Iraq that ‘must reflect the highest standards of pluralism, press freedom and editorial independence.’

The two groups agreed that that there was a need to establish a new ‘unified and vigorous’ association of journalists, committed to the defence of social and professional rights for all Iraqi journalists.

“There is unanimous agreement that the authentic voice of press freedom in the region must be heard in discussions about a fresh start for Iraqi media,” said Aidan White, IFJ general secretary.

“Building peace and democracy means creating media structures and a culture of journalism that is independent of all political interests, whether it is home grown political manipulation or prejudices imposed from outside.”

The meeting also covered various aspects of the journalism industry throughout the Arab world, stressing that the region required a programme of action to promote reform and debate. It agreed to establish a training programme for Arab journalists on social and professional demands.

“Despite anger over the war in Iraq and much bitterness caused by the suffering of Palestinian journalists, there is the will to create a new international solidarity in which Arab journalists are fully engaged,” said White.

“Everyone agrees that in many Arab countries there needs to be more effort to challenge censorship and state interference in the work of journalists.”

The two associations are set to meet again in Cairo later this year to discuss press freedom issues in the Arab world.

Add a Comment

Your display name This field is mandatory

Your e-mail address This field is mandatory (Your e-mail address won't be published)

Security code