A three-day training workshop on Peace and Conflict Reporting has closed in Cairo, the Egyptian capital, for 18 Somali journalists, and ATMIS officers to equip them with skills needed to engage meaningfully in peace, national cohesion, and stability.
The workshop was organised jointly by the Cairo International Center for Conflict Resolution, Peacekeeping and Peacebuilding (CCCPA), the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) Political Affairs Unit and Somalia’s National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ).
The workshop provided an opportunity for the participants to network with conflict experts, examine their roles in reporting conflict, and devise strategies for covering conflict accurately, impartially, and responsibly.
At the opening, the ATMIS Chief Military Officer (CMIO), Col Mohamed Sirat Yusuf, stated that Somali media organisations and various Civil Society Groups were important in unpacking the layers of the Somali conflict and to help the public understand the nature of the conflict as it relates to social, political, humanitarian, and economic processes in Somalia.
“This training focused on two key objectives which are to equip Somali CSOs and ATMIS Civilian, Military and Police officers with requisite knowledge and skills on conflict sensitive reporting to enable them to integrate principles of monitoring and analysing peace in Somalia, as well as to create awareness for an objective reporting of issues with impartiality, particularly in an environment such as Somalia,” said Col. Sirat
He added that for a country that has been in the throes of internecine conflict for the past 30 years, many local and international populations rely on journalists and civil society actors to monitor the conflict to provide information that is accurate and impartial. To that end, conflict sensitive reporting that is guided by ethics and principles would improve the quality of monitoring, reporting and analysis that comes out of Somalia.
The Cairo International Center for Conflict Resolution, Peacekeeping and Peacebuilding (CCCPA) works to Prevent, mitigate, and resolve violent conflicts through facilitating and supporting efforts of dialogue, negotiation, mediation, and national reconciliation. The Center works on building capacities and improving community level resilience to peace and security challenges.
According to the Director General of the CCCPA, Ambassador Ahmed Abdel-Latif, hosting Somali journalists and ATMIS for the training was one way of contributing to conflict prevention, crisis management, peacebuilding and prevention of radicalization and extremism in Somalia.
“Continuous partnering with stakeholders in Somalia and ATMIS will enhance the mechanisms to achieve sustainable peace, security and stability in Somalia”, Ambassador Abdel-Latif said.
The Ambassador of Somalia to Egypt, Ilyas Sheikh Omar Abubakar, thanked the Government of Egypt and the Cairo International Center for Conflict Resolution, Peacekeeping and Peacebuilding (CCCPA) for the organizing such important workshop.
Other keynote speakers included the Ambassador of Sweden to Egypt, Hakan Emsgard, the Counselor of Japan to Egypt, Ken Nishigahiro, the Director of African Communities and Organisations Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Egypt, Ambassador Ashraf Swelam, and a UNDP Representative, Alessandro Fracasseti, as well as the representative of NUSOJ, Abukar Shiekh Mohamud.
The training was facilitated by academics, researchers and experts in the field and allowed participants to explore in depth the nature of conflict, the sources, stages and effects of conflict, identifying conflict analysis tools and the roles that CSOs, ATMIS military, police and civilians should play in conflict prevention and management.