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Top story in this issue:
RELATION TOWARDS WAR CRIMES AND THE HAGUE TRIBUNAL
Many say relation towards war crimes is the test needed to start and end clearing up the conflict in former Yugoslav countries. Unfortunately, all parties and countries seem to have the same attitudes towards war crimes and the role of the Hague Court. The consciousness that all parties (although not to the same extent and in the same manner) committed crimes is hard to find its way to general public – and ICTY in Hague is seen exclusively as a political instrument, directed against"our"national interests.
These issues become more and more important as the role of the Hague Tribunal ends soon and the issue of war crimes is passed on to local courts.
Key issues for further normalization and stabilization processes among countries involved in the conflict are how much local judicial systems are capable of trials for war crimes, what is the dominating attitude of the public towards such issues and what improvement can be expected.
Introduction – project information
STINA news agency (Split, Croatia), Media Plan Institute (Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina) and Novi Sad School of Journalism (Novi Sad, Serbia and Montenegro) are starting a new regional project "Media network for promotion of cooperation and understanding between ex-Yugoslav countries" (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Serbia and Montenegro: a contribution to post-conflict communication).
The goal of the project is to contribute to development of post-conflict communication in media of the three countries.
Media communication and content are significantly reduced and are still marked by conflict. It slows down and encumbers the normalization process, including full democratization of the countries and stabilization of the region in general. Development of normal communication is a key prerequisite for overcoming still existing tensions, as well as various prejudices, blocks, frustrations and trauma that, in various forms, act even after the end of the conflict.
One of the reasons for it, undoubtedly, is inadequate role of media that don't give enough attention to important subjects which mark and burden relations between countries in the region. In order to establish and develop post-conflict communication, media need to responsibly, competently and professionally open, research and analyze many subjects ranging from difficult facing with recent past to n necessity of new cooperation that, in its turn, also opens many doubts and issues.
The goal of this (pilot) project is to try and initiate and present such issues in media.
We are well aware that there many subjects about which there are differing opinions in our general public, but we also know that there are many close approaches and initiatives, many manipulations of recent past, current today and near future, as well as readiness to break down such manipulations as it is the only way towards stabilization and normalization of relations.
This pilot project will last six months. As part of it we will realize 12 issues of info service for media cooperation and understanding: REGIONAL PARALLELS which will try to comparatively, in all three countries involved, start coverage of some important issues in three basic areas: facing recent past, characteristics of new political reality and models and methods of establishing new forms of cooperation. Together with electronic info service, each issue will be followed by joint radio show with broadcasts from all three countries primarily intended for local radio stations in order for them to present these shows to as large public as possible.
Content presented in electronic info service and radio show are meant for general public as well as specialized institutions and NGOs dealing with relation research or aiding cooperation in the region. Project carriers will try to find additional means to organize several specialized educational seminars about the post-conflict communication for editors and journalists from all three countries.
Project "Media network for promotion of cooperation and understanding among countries of the former Yugoslavia" (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Serbia and Montenegro: addition to post-conflict communication) is implemented with the support of The Balkan Trust for Democracy (BTD).