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YRA: Conscious attitude of the media is essential for unity

The Union of the Free Press (Yekitîya Ragihandina Azad, YRA) of Northern and Eastern Syria has called on journalists from the region to deal responsibly with the efforts towards Kurdish unity. The media should act as a catalyzer for all initiatives to promote dialogue and mutual understanding between political actors, said YRA co-chair Bankîn Sîdo at a press conference at the weekend in Qamishlo. Especially in view of a number of targeted campaigns aimed at undermining the efforts for unity among the various Kurdish actors, a responsible and conscious attitude of the media is essential to contribute to the solution and provide a service to society, he said.

“The efforts for Kurdish unity are widely supported both by the Kurdish forces and internationally. At the same time there are certain circles that lack the will for positive changes in our region. This fact is reflected in a wide range of initiatives to sabotage efforts for a political harmony of the different Kurdish forces. In order for the existing conflicts to be resolved and the efforts for an Kurdish unity to achieve a positive result, this project should be actively supported with great dedication and personal commitment by activists, intellectuals and media workers,” said Sîdo.

YRA co-chair emphasized that: “The role of the media as a central carrier of social sensitization is significant. For this reason, terms that tend to spread confusion and misinformation and could further deepen conflicts between political parties should be explicitly avoided. Otherwise we would contribute to blocking a solution.”

The YRA therefore proposed that guidelines be drawn up to promote understanding between the various actors and strengthen the population’s confidence in the solution project. According to YRA, this would also encourage the population to become actively involved in the efforts, while creating a positive atmosphere. “In this sense, the Kurdish press and media professionals should consider the efforts for national unity as a strategic goal and avoid falling into routine and direct their actions towards reuniting the society that has been polarized by narrow-minded politics in the past. Transparent reporting should continue to be ensured, but untrustworthy sources and reports that create a negative climate and unconfirmed events should be handled with care. The Kurdish press must fulfil its responsibility adequately so that the people can obtain their rights,” Sîdo said.

With the aim of “unifying the Kurdish position” in Northern Syria, the PYD (Democratic Union Party) and the ENKS (Kurdish National Council) have been holding talks for some time to resolve existing conflicts and build unity. The impetus for this came from the General Commander of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), Mazlum Abdî Kobanê, who launched the initiative at the end of last month.

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