Mogadishu, Monday, November 22, 2021: The Federation of Somali Journalists (FESOJ), Somalia Disability Cluster and Human Rights Cluster have today, November 22, 2021, concluded two – day face-to-face panel discussion meeting on inclusive safety for all journalists and human rights defenders during the election held at Sahafi Hotel in Mogadishu.
The meeting focused on how to ensure the safety and protection of journalists and human rights defenders during the election coverage in Somalia.
The two-day panel discussion event has been participated by twenty members from the Ministry of Information, Ministry of Women and Human Rights Development, Judiciary, and Parliament. The participants were divided into two groups of ten persons. The first group took part on the first day, while the second group attended the next day.
The discussion has focused on how the Somali government’s agreements on human rights can be applied to protect journalists and human rights advocates as part of Somalia’s election monitoring and reporting.
During the meeting, members from FESOJ, Somalia Disability Cluster and Human Rights Cluster has made presentations detailing the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) relating to the human rights treaties to which Somalia is a party and the recommendations on the safety of journalists and human rights defenders.
Furthermore, Khalid Ma’aw, Somali MP and Ahmed Abdi Omar, Director of the Human Rights Department of the Ministry of Women have provided valuable suggestions on how the journalists and the human rights defenders can achieve safety in considering the human rights treaties that Somalia has signed.
The twenty persons participating in the two–day panel discussion meeting have discussed the current situation of the Human Rights defenders and the safety of the journalists, in particular how to ensure their safety during the election coverage.
The two–day panel discussion meeting held from 21st to 22 November 2021 was organized and conducted by FESOJ, Somalia Disability Cluster and the Human Rights Defenders Cluster with the support of UNSOM Human Rights Protection Group (HRPG) has discussed the significant roles of the media and human rights defenders during the elections.
In conclusion, the panel discussions meeting was also a platform raising the key questions relating to how the journalists and the human rights defenders could ensure to achieve conducting elections that are free and fair in a safe and conducive environment.