In follow up to the UNESCO Rabat Declaration (2014) and in the context of the HAWER Initiative and UNESCO’s efforts to build the capacity of the media sector in the promotion of Intercultural Dialogue, UNESCO aims to scale up a regional framework for media professionals to provide a guiding structure and enable an informed discussion among media stakeholders towards promoting Intercultural Dialogue (ID). The framework to be considered, as a fundamental point of reference, guiding media professionals on their role and obligations on how they can best promote intercultural dialogue.

This initiative comes at times where media in the Arab Region face varying degrees of challenges and competences. Media professionals bear a heavy responsibility for the quality of discourse in the society. Common across the region are concerns over the quality of media reporting on intercultural dialogue issues and the absence of common media standards and enforcement mechanisms with regards to journalism ethics and standards. These concerns were largely shared by media representatives themselves in the UNESCO Rabat Conference.

This initiative comes also at times of increased political, social, and religious frictions; where it is of major importance for the media not to exacerbate these tensions. In contrary, media should play a central role in raising awareness about existing commonalities and reporting on the different cultures to promote intercultural dialogue in the region.

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Rabat Recommendations Page 1

 

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