UN meeting aims to help Arab journalists better understand development issues

25 February 2003

Prominent Arab journalists and media experts convened in Beirut today for a United Nations-backed workshop aimed at enhancing the capacity of reporters to raise public awareness and participation in sustainable development issues.

The UN Economic and Social Commission of Western Asia (ESCWA) workshop, entitled "Strengthening the Role of Arab media for Achieving Sustainable Development," specifically aims to strengthen the role of Arab journalists in evaluating the outcomes and implementation of last year's World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD).

While experts discussed crucial environmental issues during that summit, ESCWA said, the challenge of simplifying those topics for increased public awareness remains for Arab journalists, who have a vital role in reaching out to the public and therefore must develop a concrete understanding of key environmental issues.

The meeting should help journalists acquire the necessary tools and techniques to evaluate the WSSD and its outcomes, as well as to design and implement related national and regional communication strategies, ESCWA said.

The three-day workshop is organized in collaboration with the Arab Media Forum for Environment and Development (AMFED), the League of Arab States and the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) regional office.


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