27.03.2012 - UNESCO

“Media Freedom Helping to Transform Society” is the theme of World Press Freedom Day 2012

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UNESCO and the Government of Tunisia will be co-organizing the main celebration of the World Press Freedom Day 2012 under the theme “New Voices: Media Freedom Helping to Transform Society” in Tunis, Tunisia, from 3 to 5 May 2012.

Established in 1993 by the United Nations General Assembly, World Press Freedom Day (WPFD) is observed annually on 3 May. One of the highlights of the celebration is the presentation of the UNESCO/ Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize. This year the Prize will be awarded on 3 May at the Presidential Palace in Tunis. Created in 1997, the award is conferred annually on an individual or an organization/institution that has made an important contribution to the “defense and/or protection of press freedom, anywhere in the world, especially if it involved taking risks”.

The Tunis event will include an extensive conference on 4 and 5 May with the support of professional media and non-governmental organizations. Participants will discuss youth and social media, safety of journalists and media workers, professional and ethical standards, especially in transitional contexts. The event will also debate the role of policymakers and lawmakers in media regulation developing public service broadcasting, decriminalization of speech, ownership of media, the mapping of digital media and access to information. It will also have several interactive sessions designed to be engaging with the audience.

Various events are also expected to take place in over 100 countries worldwide to mark the observance of the World Press Freedom Day.

UNESCO provides its Member States with advisory services on media legislation, thereby making governments, lawmakers and other decision makers more aware of the need to safeguard free expression. It supports independent media in zones of conflict to enable them to play an active role in conflict prevention and resolution, and in the transition towards a culture of peace.

As we observe World Press Freedom Day, we pay tribute to the men and women in the media profession for their commitment to keep the public informed about local, national and global developments regardless of the threat to their lives.

All participants must register online via one of the following links:

Registration in Arabic will be available shortly.

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