Writers, journalists gather to discuss media’s role in social cohesion

Writers and academics gathered in a Diyarbakır hotel on Saturday for a workhop to discuss media’s role in social cohesion. (Photo: Zaman daily)
Writers and academics gathered in a Diyarbakır hotel on Saturday for a workhop to discuss media’s role in social cohesion. (Photo: Zaman daily)

Date posted: February 24, 2013


Prominent writers, academics and representatives from various media organizations gathered on Saturday in the Kurdish-populated province of Diyarbakır to discuss the role of the media in promoting social cohesion.

The workshop, titled “Social Cohesion and the Media,” was organized by the Medialog Platform, an industry advocacy group connected to the İstanbul-based Journalists and Writers Foundation (GYV).

The opening speech of the event was delivered by Diyarbakır Mayor Osman Baydemir, who saluted the participants in Kurdish.

“I regret to say that there is a social conflict between the east and the west and the south and the north of Turkey,” Baydemir said, adding that social cohesion is a prerequisite for achieving peace. The Diyarbakır mayor further stated that he believes the language used by the media is crucial in removing social conflicts.

“The media should speak the language of peace as it plays an effective role in shaping society. It is responsible not only for what it has done but also for what it has not done. For example, I think we closed our eyes to what happened in Roboski,” said Baydemir, criticizing the media for not focusing much on the Uludere tragedy, in which 34 civilians were mistaken for terrorists and killed by military airstrikes in Şırnak’s Uludere district, named Roboski in Kurdish, due to false intelligence in December of 2011.

Also speaking at the event, GYV President Mustafa Yeşil recalled another Medialog meeting in 2010 in the southeastern province of Mardin, which dealt with the perception of the East and Southeast in the national print and broadcast media.

“We talked about how the way the media covers news from the region may hurt its people [at the 2010 meeting]. I regret to say that we still tackle the same issues today,” Yeşil stated.

Today’s Zaman columnist Şahin Alpay, who was the moderator of the workshop, remarked that the media should provide people with accurate and reliable information without any distortion. Alpay also touched upon the indispensability of editorial independence and the significance of a code of ethics for media organizations, stating that the Turkish media is led more by bosses than news editors.

Journalist Cemal Uşşak who is the vice president of the GYV also highlighted the need for editorial independence, calling his colleagues to act with common sense and listen to their conscience as well.

“The [Turkish] media has just recently recognized the presence of Kurds, Laz, Georgians, Alevis and Yezidis in Turkey. How can a media outlet provide reliable information without recognizing these [ethnicities],” Kurdish intellectual İbrahim Güçlü said in his address to the participants.

“How can you bring peace without giving the Kurds equal rights,” Güçlü asked.

In his speech at the workshop, İhsan Dağı, another Today’s Zaman columnist, said the role of the media in maintaining peace in society is sometimes exaggerated.

“Some media organizations believe they can contribute to national peace even without touching upon many issues on the country’s agenda. I doubt that this is a correct stance,” a skeptical Dağı said.

Source: Today’s Zaman, 23 February 2013

Related News

Take protests seriously, work to solve problems, Fethullah Gülen urges

Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen has urged that the protests that have gripped Turkey for nearly 10 days not be underestimated or ignored, adding that “we share the blame” for the unrest. Gülen also urged restraint and patience from his followers and said “our duty is to work to rehabilitate hearts.” Gülen frequently used “we” in a […]

Turkey requests extradition of Fethullah Gülen but not for coup attempt, says US

The US has confirmed it has received a formal extradition request from Ankara for the Turkish cleric Fethullah Gülen, but not over the July coup attempt the Turkish authorities has accused Gülen of orchestrating.

Sajjanhar: Dialogue urges one to excel in one’s own faith

Ashok Sajjanhar, the Secretary of the Indian Interior Ministry’s National Foundation for Communal Harmony (NFCH), in a statement he made during a workshop organized by the Journalists and Writers Foundation’s (GYV) Intercultural Dialogue Platform (KADİP), indicated that involvement in dialogue work encourages one to learn one’s faith more profoundly.

Gülen: Despite differences in method peace process in Kurdish issue should be supported

Yet another show of support for Turkey’s ongoing settlement process — aiming to end the decades-old bloodshed in the country — has been voiced, this time from Turkish-Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen, who said some people might oppose the government’s method of solving the settlement process but for the sake of peace the process should be […]

Fountain’s Yeşilova: We believe human life and the universe are each a book to read

English-language The fountain magazine Editor-in-Chief hakan yeşilova has said his magazine has an editorial policy that promotes love and respect for all, adding that they see human life and the universe as books that need to be read.

Gulen Institute Youth Platfrom announces essay contest: ‘Hospitality in the Global Village’

The Gulen Institute Youth Platform has announced its “Annual Essay Contest” topic for 2013: Hospitality in the Global Village. The Gulen Institute Youth Platform encourages all high school students from the U.S. and from around the world to participate the contest. The youth platform hopes that this essay will help young minds define problems related […]

Latest News

Fethullah Gülen’s Condolence Message for South African Human Rights Defender Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Hizmet Movement Declares Core Values with Unified Voice

Ankara systematically tortures supporters of Gülen movement, Kurds, Turkey Tribunal rapporteurs say

Erdogan possessed by Pharaoh, Herod, Hitler spirits?

Devious Use of International Organizations to Persecute Dissidents Abroad: The Erdogan Case

A “Controlled Coup”: Erdogan’s Contribution to the Autocrats’ Playbook

Why is Turkey’s Erdogan persecuting the Gulen movement?

Purge-victim man sent back to prison over Gulen links despite stage 4 cancer diagnosis

University refuses admission to woman jailed over Gülen links

In Case You Missed It

Another woman faces detention at hospital just after giving birth

Current defamation campaign against Hizmet was part of Ergenekon scheme

Kimse Yok mu delivers aid in Palestine during Eid al-Adha

Kimse Yok Mu organizes international cartoon competition: ‘Refugees’

‘We see in Mr. Gulen a man teaching God’s words’

Turkish educator says Demirel stood with Turkish schools abroad

Purge-victim mother of three dies of heart attack

Copyright 2022 Hizmet News