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Fayyad launches Palestinian media award

May 5, 2010 4:16 P.M. (Updated: May 6, 2010 5:17 P.M.)
Ramallah – Ma'an – Prime Minister Salam Fayyad announced Wednesday the launch of an annual award for outstanding reporting in Palestinian media.

Fayyad told reports during his weekly press briefing on Palestinian media that he saluted Palestinian journalists on World Press Freedom Day, considering the event "very important for Palestinian journalists.

On this occasion we are reminded of ongoing Israeli violations against Palestinian journalists, "but solidarity with Palestinian journalists should not be confined to one day," Fayyad told reporters.

The new award, he said, is designed to encourage and support the development of Palestinian media, which Fayyad says is a prerequisite for the establishment of an independent Palestinian state.

This media will be the link between government and citizens and will secure transparency and accountability, Fayyad said, adding that the PA should exert further efforts to defend and project journalists as well as secure freedom of the press, which is "part of the general freedoms Palestinian citizens should enjoy according to Palestinian law."

The PA prime minister said Palestinian media have made "significant progress on regional and international levels, thanks to [Palestinian journalists'] professionalism and hard work," with many receiving international awards for their news coverage which were awarded because of "distinguished achievements and dedication to reporting on Palestinian suffering."

Fayyad added that several Palestinian journalists "died martyrs defending [the Palestinian] cause and land against the Israeli occupation and settlers," including Ghassan Kanafani, Naji Al-Ali, Fadil Shana’ah, Muhammad Bishawi, among others.
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