Post-Conflict and Post-Disaster Responses
For several years now, UNESCO has been supporting independent media in conflict and post-conflict situations to enable them to gather and disseminate non-partisan information. In this respect, the assistance provided to independent media in South East Europe, Angola, the Great Lakes Region in Africa, the Middle East, East Timor, and Afghanistan has contributed to peace building and reconciliation processes.
UNESCO’s action in this area includes the promotion of dialogue among media professionals in zones of conflict and the outside world and provision of advice to the authorities of countries in postconflict situations in drafting new media legislation, which enhances the development of freedom of expression.
This action in promoting independent media in conflict situations has been recognized by the international community. The humanitarian nature of this work was recognized by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and the Department of Humanitarian Affairs in the June 1994 United Nations Inter-Agency Appeal. In 1996 the Appeal designated UNESCO as lead agency for assistance to independent media for the reconstruction period in the former Yugoslavia. Since then the Organization has received considerable financial support from a number of donor countries.