The World Press Freedom Day

May 3, 2011

In commemoration of May 3d, the World Press Freedom Day, the three media organizations in Macedonia – Association of the Journalists of Macedonia (AJM), Journalists and Media Workers Trade Union (SSNM) and the Macedonian Institute for Media (MIM)held a joint press conference regarding the situation inthe media sphere in the country. In that occasion a joint statement was presented that appeals for  common action and solidarity within the media community in Macedonia , which needs to defend the freedom and dignity of its profession.

JOINT STATEMENT

by

Association of the Journalists of Macedonia (AJM)

Journalists and Media Workers Trade Union (SSNM)

Macedonian Institute for Media (MIM)

The freedom of the press in Macedonia is seriously endangered. The professional and the personal integrity of the journalists are jeopardized, while their economic and social rights are not respected. The political parties are strongly pressuring the media over the media, using them in the political battle with those who have different opinions. The media serve their owners as an instrument for achieving their political and business interests. The laws that regulate the media sphere are implemented selectively; the great amount of money that the Government spends for advertising is selectively allocated which undermines the media independence. The editorial teams do not have the power to resist the cross-pressure coming from the political centers and the media owners. The result of this situation is low respect for the professional standards and violation of the social rights of the journalists. The journalists are pressured not to think of the fundamental function of the media – to serve the public interest.

In the interest of the press freedom and the protection of the journalism WE DEMAND:

1. The institutions in charge for control and regulation of the media, to establish unremitting, unselective implementation of the regulations, in order to enable equal and fair position for all media on the market;

2. The institutions to ensure that the Labor Law is respected in all broadcast and print media;

3. The political parties to stop interfering in the media and leave them work without any restraint;

4. The media owners to stop using the media as megaphones of the political and business centers of power;

5. The editors to stand for the profession and for their journalists, and to stick to the professional standards and the ethics; Otherwise, we will point out the institutions, the political parties or business circles, which create chaos in the media sphere diminishing the fundamental principles of journalism.

Dear colleagues, We invite You, today, on the World Press Freedom Day, to join us in defense of our Profession, in defense of our dignity and freedom.

Association of the Journalists of Macedonia (AJM)

Journalists and Media Workers Trade Union (SSNM)

Macedonian Institute for Media (MIM)