Libyan Media in Times of Crises

UNESCO: The Role of Libyan Media and its Responsibility in times of Crises

In discussions facilitated by UNESCO and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of Spain, senior managers and owners from ten Libyan media outlets, including television, print, radio and online media based both inside the country and in the region have jointly approved the “Madrid Declaration: Towards Professional Media: The Role of Libyan Media and its Responsibility in Times of Crises”:

The intent of the Declaration is to proclaim publicly and forcefully their commitment to work together to reform the Libyan media landscape with a view to adherence to professional norms and standards.

The document, elaborated over four days of intensive discussions and consultations, outlines a comprehensive set of principles to which the signatories agree to abide.

It recognizes the key role played by the media in society, especially at this difficult time, and affirms their commitment to promote freedom of expression, responsible journalism and the absolute rejection of all forms of hate speech and incitement to violence. The document calls on all Libyan media colleagues to join the effort to develop “a unifying national vision for media”.

Michael Croft, UNESCO Representative to Libya, said:

“This has been a technical meeting in which we have had technical discussions around key challenges facing the media.

“But the significance of your commitment is clear; in declaring your intention to foster a national vision for the media, to reject hate speech and foster professional practice, you have sent a very strong signal that the Libyan media are ready to play their part in the search for peace.”

Eva Martinez Sanchez, Director of Magreb Region in the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, said:

“Journalists and media owners are very important for reconciliation in the Libyan political process facilitated by the United Nations...

“And the Madrid Declaration is a very good step that contributes to build consensus amongst Libyan society.”

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