18th General Meeting and Strategy Conference of International Freedom of Expression Exchange (IFEX) has been held in the capital Port-of-Spain of Trinidad & Tobago in the northeastern coast of Venezuela.
Oppression of repressive regimes, struggle against the fear and strengthening the solidarity were emphasized.
Game: We can make good news, more
Executive Director of IFEX, Annie Game, explained during the opening speech that freedom of expression and journalism weren’t safe while caricaturist Zunar in Malaysia was under the threat of being sentenced to 40 years in prison, investigative journalist İsmailova in Azerbaijan was in prison and journalists in many countries were doing their jobs under harsh conditions.
“If we approach more creatively and strengthen the solidarity we can make good news, more. Look, Uruguay will make a law for media democratization,” Game said.
Dojcsa: They spread fear into society
In congress where 170 members from fund organizations, IFEX, workshop directors participated in, side activities like ‘running campaign effectively’, ‘digitals security practices’ and ‘protecting conscientious objection prisoners’ were held.
Romanian Civil Liberties Union representative Dalma Dojcsa spoke on the session ‘Manufacturing Fear’:
“Romania government is busy with manufacturing fear instead of preparing people and the media for refugees. Journalists should fear in an environment where people and the media attack the refugees.
Gamal Eid from Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRİ) criticizing Saudi Arabia’s attack against Yemen and intervening in Egypt:
“If we know how the fear is manufactured, we can easily and bravely fight against it.”
Mijatovic from OSCE: violence isn’t a necessity of the journalism
Freedom of Media representative Dunja Mijatovic from Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE):
“Unfortunately, many governments don’t struggle enough against the crimes against the journalists. The violence isn’t a necessity of the professional journalism. We can beat the impunity by acting with solidarity. We should increase solidarity.”
Battle of a female journalist in Colombia
Jineth Bedoya Lima from Colombia told on panel ‘collaboration and communication’ how she lived through the hard times with solidarity of her colleagues after being kidnapped and raped by paramilitaries.
“I think we didn’t benefit efficiently from social media to know Islamic people better and to set going non-governmental organizations.”
Trionfi: Only active defenders should apply law projects
International Press Institute (IPI) official Barbara Trionfi:
“Some law organizations may apply law projects in order to strength their own structures or to gain money. We should be careful about it. Only active defenders of law should apply those law projects.”
Braimah: we established a dialogue with the government
Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) representative Süleymana Braimah told how the bad relationships with Government of Ghana were mended:
“They didn’t send representatives to criticizing law organizations since we objected monopolizing the records of internet and telephone communications of the citizens. It is good that they started to attend our activities when we gave importance to the dialogue. Government of Ghana pays attention to us, now. We understand that we did a good job.” (EÖ/BD)
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