HWPL Ethiopia Peace Press Forum
On the 19th of October, the 2019 Ethiopia Peace Press Forum was held at the meeting hall of IPSS in Ethiopia, and Ethiopian journalists were in attendance. The theme of the forum was the “Realization of Peace Journalism and Public Journalism,” and it emphasized the role of a journalist in spreading the news of peace. Attendees also discussed freedom of expression based on Article 19 of the Declaration of Human Rights.
Various other topics were also given attention, especially ways in which to encourage citizens to participate in peace activities by arousing public opinion, and the kinds of roles journalists should play to aid in those methods.
In addition, the journalists who attended the forum wrote and signed the Pledge of Peace Initiative, in which they promised to deliver peace news through the platform called Peace Initiative (PI) (http://peaceinitiative.net) and participate in peace projects. HWPL is running a Peace Initiative platform with journalists all over the world. This platform raises awareness of peace based on social atmosphere and the freedom of speech and press, and aims to ensure that the news of peace, which contributes to conflict resolution, can be delivered to people from all over the world.
Mr. Zelalem Girma, the Senior Editor to the Ethiopian Herald and who has participated in the Peace Initiative, emphasized the importance of a peace news channel saying, “Peace Initiative (PI) is a global journalist network in efforts of facilitating a culture of peace as contribution to conflict resolution and peace building through press freedom and freedom of information stipulated in the UN resolutions and international agreements. Individual journalists and media agencies affiliated with PI dedicate to spreading news of peace to enhance human rights and protect democracy.”
Ethiopian journalists who attended the forum said it was a meaningful event to share each other’s thoughts where they have previously not had a chance to exchange their thoughts on peace. They also hoped for these kinds of meetings to be continued in the future.
*Article 19 of the Declaration of Human Rights
Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive, and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.