UNESCO and Al Jazeera Satellite Network have signed an agreement to promote freedom of expression and access to information in the Arab world.
“This agreement advances a new kind of partnership UNESCO is establishing with media organizations,” said UNESCO’s Director-General Irina Bokova. “The UN charter proclaims the promotion of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms for all. As a leading source of news and information about the Arab world and beyond, Al Jazeera is well positioned to uphold these principles in this region.”
World Press Freedom Day on 3 May will be an annual focal point of the two-year agreement. UNESCO and Al Jazeera will work together to host a series of events to mark the Day, including documentary films and photojournalism exhibitions.
To further encourage freedom of expression, a correspondent who has demonstrated exceptional professionalism and courage while covering armed conflict or natural disaster will be awarded a trophy at the Al Jazeera International Documentary Film Festival. The award will be funded by Al Jazeera and UNESCO will be part of the selection committee.