Message from Frank La Rue for the MENA and TUNIS conferences:
AMARC Conference in Tunisia calls for the institutionalization of the right to communicate in Maghreb-Mashreq countries
Tunis, March 10th, 2012. More than a hundred associative and community media representatives, freedom of expression activists and delegates from international organizations supporting media called for the institutionalization of the right to communicate for democracy in the region during the closing of the first AMARC Conference in Mashreq and Maghreb on "Community Media and the Arab Spring", that was held in Tunis, on March 9 and 10, 2012. The conference brought together representatives from associative radios and production groups of countries from all over the region (Jordan, Egypt, Morocco, Libya, Palestine and Tunisia) and from all AMARC’s regions, especially Sub-Saharan Africa.
The event was organized by the Syndicat tunisien des radios libres, the Middle East and North Africa Community Media Working Group, the World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters (AMARC) the Community Media Network (CMN), International Media Support (IMS), E-Joussour Portal and Inter Press Service, with the support of Oxfam Novib, UNESCO, EED and Open Society Foundation (OSF).
The conference allowed for a review of the Tunisian experience and more broadly of the whole region in the light of international communications standards, to analyze the use of social media in the process of speaking for media pluralism and the relations between media and civil society. A particular attention was given to the women’s situation and to the necessary conditions for the fulfilment of democracy, pluralism and freedom of expression, which constitute a prerequisite.
Through service to members, networking and project implementation, the World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters AMARC, brings together a network of more than 4,000 community radios, Federations and community media stakeholders in more than 130 countries. The main global impact of AMARC since its creation in 1983, has been to accompany and support the establishment of a worldwide community radio sector that has democratized the media sector. AMARC advocates for the right to communicate at the international, national, local and neighbourhood levels and defends and promotes the interests of the community radio movement through solidarity, networking and Cooperation.
First AMARC Middle East and North Africa Conference: « Community Media and the Arab Spring »
Tunis, March 9 - 10, 2012
Community Media and the Arab Spring
Hotel Majestic, 36 avenue de Paris, Tunis
The Middle East and North Africa Community Media Working Group and the World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters (AMARC) in partnership with Syndicat Tunisien des radios libres (STRL), Community Media Network (CMN), the International Press Service (IPS), Panos West Africa, International Media Support (IMS) and supported among others by EED, Oxfam Novib and Open Society Foundation; organize the first AMARC-MENA international conference «Community Media and the Arab Spring», to be held in Tunis, on March 9th and 10th, 2012 at the Majestic Hotel .
The first MENA Conference « Community Media and the Arab Spring » will gather more than one hundred Freedom of Expression and communication rights advocates, community radio broadcasters, production groups and stakeholders from the MENA region and representatives from other regions. The conference will allow for knowledge sharing, networking and learning from the accumulated 30 years’ experience of representatives of the worldwide community radio movement.
In addition, strategies will be developed to contribute to advocacy on media pluralism, on participatory and sustainable human development and on cultural diversity in the Mediterranean region. The participants will also explore how to increase the effectiveness of community radio stakeholder’s interventions in the region. .
Holding the First Community Media MENA Conference in Tunisia is recognition by the international community radio movement of the importance of the civil society movement that initiated the Arab Spring and opened the way to media pluralism in the region. In this perspective, sharing worldwide experiences in advocacy and diverse models of legislation and their respect of international human rights standards are essential to the development of democratic societies in the region.Firthermore, there is a strong consensus in the human rights/media community worldwide on the important contribution of community media to participatory human sustainable development: It allows local communities to activate their full potential in fighting poverty, ending the marginalization of women, and supporting youth and children rights, as well as taking on, among other development challenges, on climate change adaptation, food security, and water and sanitation issues.
Please register on line to participate in the conference and/or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for any assistance, including visa and accommodation to facilitate your participation in the Conference.
Looking forward to met you in Tunis!!!!