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UNESCO and Al Jazeera to promote freedom of expression in the Arab world

UNESCO and Al-Jazeera Satellite Network have signed an agreement to promote freedom of expression and access to information in the Arab world.

UNESCO’s Director-General Irina Bokova and Al-Jazeera’s Director-General, Wadah Khanfar, signed the Memorandum of Understanding in Doha (Qatar) during Bokova’s official visit to the country.

“This agreement advances a new kind of partnership UNESCO is establishing with media organisations,” said Bokova. “The UN charter proclaims the promotion of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms for all. As a leading source of news and information about the Arab world and beyond, Al-Jazeera is well positioned to uphold these principles in this region.”

Advocacy and awareness-raising are key components of the agreement. The partnership will research the status of the freedom of expression in the Arab region and share findings through Al-Jazeera news and programmes.

World Press Freedom Day on 3 May will be an annual focal point of the two-year agreement. UNESCO and Al-Jazeera will work together to host a series of events to mark the Day, including documentary films and photojournalism exhibitions.

To further encourage freedom of expression, a correspondent who has demonstrated exceptional professionalism and courage while covering armed conflict or natural disaster will be awarded a trophy at the Al-Jazeera International Documentary Film Festival. The award will be funded by Al-Jazeera and UNESCO will be part of the selection committee.

Date posted: December 14, 2010 Last modified: May 23, 2018 Total views: 120