Building on the recommendations of the recent Madrid III meeting in June, Libyan media managers and journalists from across the country and the region are gathering for three days in the Tunisian capital to establish guidelines concerning hate speech.
Once elaborated, the guidelines will be widely distributed to allow media outlets to introduce common standards, encourage professional conduct and avoid incitement.
This initiative is a key component of the Action Plan on Reform of the Libyan Media Sector proposed by journalists and media managers in Madrid last month.
Ghaith Fariz, UNESCO Regional Director, emphasized that “UNESCO applauds the efforts of the Libyan colleagues in tackling this critical issue”, adding that it “demonstrates their continued commitment to a process that can transform the role of the media in the country and contribute to peace and reconciliation.”
Marisia Pechaczek, Chargé d’Affaires of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, confirmed that “The Netherlands is pleased to join other UNESCO member states who support the media reform process. We do so because we trust that the results of the workshop will have tangible impact on the ground.”
Salla-Riina Hokkanen, representing the Embassy of Finland, stated that “The theme of this workshop, developing guidelines for countering hate speech, is in our view of crucial importance for building peace in any society.”
This activity is implemented by UNESCO in partnership with the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands; the Organization’s own contribution made possible through the generous support of the Government of Finland.
It is part of UNESCO’s ongoing interventions to reinforce the capacity of Libyan media practitioners and their contribution to reconciliation and conflict-sensitive reporting.