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Protection of journalists and journalism in crisis and conflict: Spotlight on Afghanistan and Burma/Myanmar


What happens when journalists have to leave their country in large numbers and the
 survival of journalism is threatened?

In 2021, this has already happened in Afghanistan and Myanmar/Burma, two countries where the space for journalism is shrinking.

Journalists with field experiences and international experts will share their experiences and viewpoints.

Program to be published soon.

Monday 1 November 2021 at 2 – 330 pm

OsloMet Pilestredet 52 (P 52) Studenthallen

https://www.oslomet.no/en/about/events/protection-journalists-afghanistan-burma-myanmar

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Recommending access to information

Seven recommendation were the result of an event at An-Najah National University in Nablus in Palestine September 29th2021:  The Right to Know: Building Back Better with Right to Information. 

The Department of Communication and Digital Media at An-Najah National University organized the event at the University Campus in cooperation with UNESCO and JMIC.

The aim was to commemorate the International Day of Access to Information, celebrated by UNESCO and partner institutions in the world every year 28 September. 

The event included three sessions with the Vice President of An-Najah University, Dr. Abdul Salam Al-Khayat, Director of the UNESCO Office Representative of UNESCO in Palestine, Ms. Noha Bawazeer, Deputy Representative of Norway in Palestine, Mr. Erling Hoem, and the representative of the Palestinian Ministry of Information, Mr. Nasser Jawabreh, and the representative of the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate, journalist Jaafar Shtayyeh. 

The second and third sessions hosted a number of academics in the field of media from various Palestinian universities and a number of journalists: Mr. Ayman Al-Masry from An-Najah National University, Mr. Amin Abu Warda, Director of Asda’a Press Office, and Mr. Salah Abu Hassan from Hebron University Ms. Hanadi Dwaikat from the Arab American University, journalist Ali Daraghmeh, editor-in-chief of Madar News Agency and Mr. Saleh Musharaka from Birzeit University.

At the end of the event, the speakers came up with the following recommendations:

  1. Establishing mechanisms to communicate with the Council of Ministers about the outcomes of the event, and working on issuing a law on the Right of Access to Information.
  2. Inclusion of the concept of the Right of Access to Information within the educational curricula of media faculties in Palestinian universities, and in media education programs at schools, and striving for the right to obtain information to be a culture in the society. 
  3.  Develop clear protocols for the relationship between media institutions on the one hand, and between community institutions and ministries on the other hand, to regulate the process of information flow, ensure its access to the public, and prevent the monopoly of information, in a way that guarantees the public’s right to benefit from information, and achieves the principle of transparency, integrity and accountability.
  4. Strengthening the relationship between media colleges and journalists, linking the educational process to the reality of journalism to enhance the concept of the Right of Access to Information among future journalists, and enhancing cooperation between academics and journalists in this field. 
  5. Establish mechanisms to continue efforts to issue the law of the Right of Access to Information, so that these efforts do not remain seasonal.
  6.  Emphasizing that the Right of Access to Information goes beyond legal texts to include ethical aspects by instilling a culture of the citizen’s right to obtain information that contributes to the process of sustainable development and achieving freedom, prosperity and democracy.
  7.  Organizing training workshops for students of the media and related sectors on the right of access to information, to deepen understanding in this field, and to open up broader horizons for translating this right on the ground.
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Access to information day 2021

Today, 28 September, is the international day for universal access to information https://en.unesco.org/commemorations/accesstoinformationday

UNESCO has organized events around the world https://en.unesco.org/commemorations/accesstoinformationday/2021/aroundtheworld

and many webinars https://en.unesco.org/sites/default/files/iduai_2021_programme.pdf

Some of JMICs partners have been asked to contribute with testimonies from Palestine and Uganda:

Here is the link: https://we.tl/t-T8iV1hFYFH

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Cross over visual storytelling

The worldknown Bangladeshi photographer Sarker Protick held a digital two day workshop 16 and 17 September 2021. 

15 participants were recruited by Pathshala South Asian Media Institute in Bangladesh, photo.circle in Nepal and the photojournalism department at OsloMet for “Platform for Photojournalists” https://www.photojournalistplatform.com

The storytelling webinar was designed for students and aspiring professionals working to produce in-depth visual stories. 

Working with photography, video and sound, Protick is interested in themes such as alteration of land and border, colonial relics and modern ecological emergencies.

He is the recipient of Joop Swart Masterclass, Magnum Foundation Fund and World Press Photo Award, for example, and has exhibited in museums, galleries and festivals all over the world. 

As a faculty member of Pathshala South Asian Media Institute he has also been part of the cooperation with OsloMet for many years.

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A seminar to connect journalists across the globe

On September 24th Global Risk Journalism Hub, OsloMet, and JMIC will produce a digital seminar on how to practice journalism and particularly podcasts during global crises. By introducing international journalists and media producers we ask whether global crises can bring creative media producers together through their work.

Jordan Gass-Pooré (CNN), Jo Healey (BBC), Craig Templeton (The Guardian Masterclass), and Aryana Noorozi (Pulitzer Prize Fellow) come together to offer practical approaches of how to produce journalism or media content during Covid-19 but also crises beyond the pandemic. Mentorship for producers, visual storytelling, podcasting on a global scale, and interviewing during traumatic events, are all topics that will be discussed.

The goal of this seminar is to connect both students and academics digitally on a global scale. The seminar calls for more interdisciplinary in journalism and beyond the newsroom. 

The seminar will be hosted by OsloMet students and Global Risk Journalism podcasters Åsta Marie Berg Sander, Thomas Johnstone and Stine Førland. Associate Professor at OsloMet, Maria Konow Lund is both the instigator of the seminar and its producer. 

Time: 24.September 2021, 12.00 (GMT+1)
Will be streamed on Youtube

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Documentation of a life lost?

Afghanistan’s Ambassador Youssof Ghafoorzai (Photo: Pål Arne Kvalnes)

27 Afghan photographers have documented life in their country before the takeover by Taliban 15 August 2021.  

The exhibition “Where there is a War, there is still Life” opened in P 46 (Pilestredet) at OsloMet Wednesday 25 August with around 50 persons present. 

The local organizer, Afghan Photographers Association (APA) was not there. Many of the photographers had chosen to be anonymous due to the current situation of threat to their lives.– Most of them are young, from different parts of the country and six of them are women. An international professional jury selected 46 photos from more than 600 images.  

The idea was conceived at the Afghan embassy in Norway. Hasina Shirzad – also Master student of journalism studies at OsloMet – opened the program. In her opening address, Profesor Emerita Elisabeth Eide (JMIC) said that the exhibition is a powerful message of a world which cannot survive in the same way, perhaps showing what is at stake if a peaceful, just and rights-based solution is not found.  

State Secretary Jens Frølich Holte opened the exhibition. He was followed by the Afghan Ambassador Youssof Ghafoorzai, OsloMet Rector Nina Waaler and Knut Olav Åmås from Fritt Ord Foundation. “Kjempeviseslåtten», composed by Harald Sæverud, originally dedicated to the Norwegian resistance during WW II, performed by pianist Svein Amund Skara concluded the program.  

Kjersti binh Hegna curated the exhibition, which has been made possible by support from the Embassy of Afghanistan in Norway, the Norwegian embassy in Afghanistan, Fritt Ord Foundation, United States Institute of Peace (USIP) and OsloMet.  

The exhibition will be shown in the lobby of P 46 in OsloMet at least until 8 September. A digital version will be produced, while a physical version hopefully will be shown in Kabul and at the UN head quarters in New York later in the autumn. A recorded streaming of the opening can be found here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iYFFRqmZA08 

Read about the exhibition and see more photos:

https://journalisten.no/afghanistan-elisabeth-eide-farzana-wahidy/apner-utstilling–malet-er-a-vise-hva-afghanistan-er-og-hva-vi-risikerer-a-miste-na/475961

Many came to see the exhibition in Pilestredet 46 (Photo: Pål Arne Kvalnes)

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Afghanistan Photo Exhibition

“Where there is a War, there is still Life”  

In these very disturbing times for Afghanistan, we are opening a very special photo exhibition, presenting 46 photos from 27 Afghan photographers/photojournalists under the title: “Where there is a War, there is still Life”.  The exhibition shows a wide range of examples of how life has been in Afghanistan during the last 20 years, a life that is now under severe threat. It was organized by Afghan Photographers Association (APA) months before the last events. However, we feel that it still communicates a strong message of humanity and freedom to the outside world as well as the need for a peaceful and just solution to the current crisis.  

The exhibition will be opened at 2 pm 25th August by the Norwegian State Secretary from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Jens Frølich Holte, followed by the Afghan Ambassador, his Excellency Mr. Youssof Ghafoorzai. Other speakers are Rector Nina Waaler at OsloMet, and Knut Olav Åmås, Director of the Free Expression foundation.  Open for the public from 1530 pm.

The opening will be streamed: https://youtu.be/iYFFRqmZA08

More information

https://www.oslomet.no/en/about/events/afghanistan-save

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HUMOUR IN ISLAM

zoom screenshot
Iranian scholar Dr. Mahmud Farjami spoke about Humour in Islam on zoom at OsloMet 12 May 2021.  

At the seminar he presented his soon to be completed research article, Self-Mockeries of a Mullah. A look on the humorous autobiography of Aqa Najafi Quchani (1878-1943).  He has continued his long-standing research into Humour in Islam in addition to presentations at conferences and teaching.  

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Trauma management for journalists in Asia

zoom screenshot of participants talking

Participants from 12 Asian countries attended an online workshop on trauma management from Kuala Lumpur 19 – 21 April 2021.  

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Urgent Media Notice from IAWRT

Malalai Maiwand

The International Association of Women in Radio and Television (IAWRT) strongly condemns the brutal shooting of IAWRT member Malalai Maiwand and her driver in Afghanistan.