Wednesday, 17 April 2019 08:59

UNESCO hold the consultation meeting on Voluntary National Review (VNR) of Access of Information and Journalists Safety

Baghdad 15 April 2019 - UNESCO, in partnership with the Iraqi national Committee for the Safety of Journalists and issue of Impunity, and the FreepressUnlimited organized a consultation meeting, on the Voluntary National Review (VNR) of SDGs 16.10.1 &2, to present the updated efforts for the preparation of a VNR and discuss challenges such as data availability and provide the opportunity for the UN system and international actors of media development as well as the CSOs to further consolidate its support for the production of the VNR and integration of the 2030 Agenda.

The meeting was opened by Mr. Qasim Hawal, the Special Adviser of PM, for Media and Culture, who stated, “on behalf of the Prime Minister, I encourage the Iraqi committee for safety of Journalists to undertake the voluntary national reviews (VNR), as a testament to the strong commitment to the 2030 Agenda at the national level”. In his opening remarks, Mr. Hawal, noted the significance of having both the government and CSOs participants to share experiences and discuss challenges faced in the review process. He added “the government of Iraq is seeking to present the VNR of Iraq at the 2019 session of the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development of the 2030 Agenda”.

Mr. Kamel Amen, the representative of the Ministry of Justice, and the member of the Safety Committee said in his speech “On behalf of the committee members, we seek to finalize this report before the end of this month so that we can launch it on the World Press Freedom Day 2019, and then submit it officially to the United Nations to be presented in New York on time".

“It's an important step for Iraq to hold meetings that gather both Iraqi government and civil society representatives to discuss the safety and protection of journalists and access to information on the context of the reviewing the VNR of Iraq," said Boris van Westering from freepressunlimited,

The members of the national committee of safety of journalists review the report and covered the overview of the process that will lead up to the 2019 VNR, including holding an additional preparatory meeting next week with the respective national committee.

It was stated that the tentative deadline for the submission of the VNR would be 3 May 2019. The report, still in draft form, examines a range of topics addressed in the VNR, including awareness raising, involvement of stakeholders, institutional mechanisms to implement the 2030 Agenda, incorporation of the SDGs into national frameworks, means of implementation and capacity building needs regrading access to information and safety of journalists.

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Additional Info

  • Agency: UNESCO

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