Secondments to Support the Safety of Journalists

Phyza Jameel, a Pakistani communication and information expert is supporting UNESCO’s agenda on “Safety of Journalists and Issues of Impunity”- a program focused on the NORCAP’s commitment to promoting freedom of expression and press for a pluralistic society. - © UNESCO

The safety of journalists and the eradication of impunity in crimes committed against them are prerequisites for achieving democracy and preserving the fundamental right to freedom of expression.

Protection should extend to all those involved in the production of journalism, including journalists, media workers and social media producers.

UNESCO has gathered 15 UN agencies and some 40 NGOs together to implement the UN Plan of Action on the Safety of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity. The Plan contributes to the creation of a free and safe environment for journalists and media workers, with a view to strengthening peace, democracy and development.

In this context, the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) has seconded two experts to implement the UN Plan of Action at the country level in Pakistan and South Sudan.

In July 2013, the NRC seconded Ms Phyza Jameel to the UNESCO Office in Islamabad. Ms Lydia Gachungi was appointed to the UNESCO Office in Juba in January 2014.

The Norwegian Refugee Council’s roster, NORCAP, is one of the UN’s most important partners in organizing and carrying out humanitarian assistance operations. Through the deployment of expert personnel, NORCAP supports efforts to develop the media sector and increase freedom of expression in crisis and post-crisis situations.

Overview of Activities

The objective of the seconded experts in Pakistan and South Sudan is to implement concrete activities from the UN Plan of Action on the Safety of Journalists and the issue of Impunity at the country level.

The experts work to ensure a safe environment for journalists by promoting professional standards, disseminating good practices, supporting professional associations in delivering safety training, and by raising awareness about the need for a culture of safety in media and an end to impunity for those who commit crimes against journalists.

The seconded experts support the following expected outputs:

  • Journalists, media workers, media houses, professional associations and governments sensitized on best practices to protect the safety of journalists and combat impunity against crimes perpetrated against journalists through the dissemination of a safety manual in Pakistan and South Sudan;
  • Impunity of  crimes against journalists reduced and measures for its prevention taken in Pakistan and South Sudan;
  • Government, civil society and media professionals in Pakistan and South Sudan sensitized about the importance of the decriminalisation of defamation;
  • Conditions allowing for media practitioners to work independently and safely improved by publishing a safety curriculum and organizing training for journalists;
  • Knowledge on the safety of journalists improved with a special focus on women journalists.

Development partner

Project timeline

1 July 2013 31 December 2014

Countries

Related News

Progress on journalists’ safety in Pakistan
11-03-2013 | Islamabad, Pakistan

Strategy 2013-2014 to guarantee the safety of journalists
05-03-2013 | Paris, France

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