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01 April 2020

Activity Details (ID# 22582)  

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Title Study visit for Serbian journalists to the Council of Europe 
Description Study visiti to the Council of Europe, local newspaper (DNA) and local television (France 3 Alsace)

- Original Location: Strasbourg, Other 
Status Completed 
Date 27/03/2008 - 28/03/2008 
Location Strasbourg, Council of Europe
Countries CoE Members: Serbia
  Joint Programme Activity - Media-Serb II
Joint Programme EC/CoE
JP Media-Serb II - Support to promote freedom of expression and information and freedom of media in accordance with CoE/EU standards    (Logframe)  (Activities)
Project Purpose 1 - 2006/DGHL/JP/1648   Media-Serb 2 - To support the establishment of a regulatory framework for freedom of expression and for the media
Expected Result 1.3 - R.3 Media professionals are informed of and trained in their rights and responsibilities
Council of Europe Programme of Activities
I – Human Rights
Line of Action ⇒ I.3 – Human Rights in public policy
Programme ☆ I.3.5  Media, information society and data protection
Project 2008/DGHL/1416 Legislative assistance, training, awareness raising
Expected Result 3 Media professionals are informed and trained on their rights and responsibilities according to CoE standards. Civil Society and Industry upholds CoE standards in the context of new communication services.

Working Method

Visits - Study Visit 
Directorate (Service) Human Rights and Legal Affairs (Cooperation - Legal and Human Rights Capacity Building Department)
CoE Contact DERVISAGIC, Lejla   email
Web Pages
Documents & links
1 http://www.coe.int/media  
Last Modified 10/12/2008 

Activity Synopsis (ID# 22582) (Hide Synopsis)

Objective(s) The aim of visit was introduction to the Council of Europe and its institutions important for promotion and protection of democratic values in Europe and visit to two regional editorial offices – TV France 3 and DNA newspaper (Dernières Nouvelles d’Alsace).

Output/Results Program of visit has included introduction to the Council of Europe, presentation of facts on its institutions, achievements, values and aims from its foundation until these days.
Participant have visited Human Rights Building - the European Court of Human Rights and had opportunity to met Judge Dragoljub Popovic. Participants were interested to learn more about Convention on Human Rights, Court itself, its procedures, case law and judgements against Serbia. After presentation of the Court, participants had made interviews with judge Popovic.

At the Secretariat of the Council of Europe, group had a meeting with Mr Matjaz Gruden, Spokesperson and Special Advisor to the Secretary General. Since it often happens that journalist and citizens are not able to distinguish European Union and Council of Europe, Mr Gruden has focused his presentation to this issue and future Council of Europe activities regarding the promotion of democracy, rule of law and human rights in Europe and its cooperation with the EU.

Next meeting was devoted to the work of the Commissioner for Human Rights which s an independent institution within the Council of Europe, mandated to promote the awareness of and respect for human rights in 47 Council of Europe member states. Mr Berry Kralj, Advisor to the Commissioner for Human Rights has informed participants of the study visit that Commissioner’s work is focused on encouraging reform measures to achieve improvement in the area of promotion and protection of human rights. Commissioner’s Office is a non-judicial institution and can not act upon individual complaints, but the Commissioner can draw conclusions and take wider initiatives on the basis of reliable information regarding human rights violations suffered by individuals. The Commissioner has mandate to visit member countries of the Council of Europe, to make reports on the human rights issues, to make recommendations and to encourage awarnes raising in those countries. The Commissioner closely cooperates with national Ombudsman, national human rights institutions, relevant NGO and other structures devoted to protection of human rights. Next Commissioner’s visit to Serbia is planned for October 2008 and at that occasion, Commissioner will meet Presedent of the Republic, Prime Minister, Speaker of the Parliament, representatives of the parliamentary parties, representatives of international and non-governmental organizations and disscus human rights conditions in Serbia.

During the firs day of the study visit, participants have also met Ambassador Sladjana Prica who presented work of Permanent Mission of Serbia to the CoE and Ms Lejla Dervisagic from the Council of Europe Legal and Human Rights Capacity Building Division (DGHL), who is Programme Advisor in charged for implementation of joint EAR/CoE media programme. Since this activity was organized under joint programme, Ms Dervisagic has presented project Support to freedom of expression and information and freedom of media in Serbia, its background, objectives, implemented and planned activities.

On the second day of the study visit participants had a meeting with representative of Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) and representative of the Congress of Regional and Local Authorities of the Council of Europe. Mr Horst Schade, Director, General Services Directorate (PACE) has presented work of PACE, its structure and organization. Participants were told that Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe consists of a number of individual representatives from each member State. The balance of political parties within each national delegation must reflect representation of the political parties or groups in their national parliaments. For participants of the study visit it was interesting to found out more about work of PACE committties and procedures for adoption of reccomendations, resolutions which are used as guidelines for a Committe of Ministers and reforms in some member countries.

Representative of the Congress of Regional and Local Authorities of the Council of Europe has explained that institution is a political assembly composed of representatives of a local or regional authority. Its 318 full members and 318 substitute members, representing over 200 000 European municipalities and regions. The Congress offers an ideal forum for dialogue where representatives of local and regional authorities discuss common problems, compare their experiences and then put their points of view to the national governments.

After visit to the CoE and its institutions, participants have visited editorial office of regional newspaper DNA. This regional newspaper is selling 80 % of its circulation through subscription in the region with 2 500 000 of inhabitants. Daily circulation is 187 000 in French and 15 000 in German language. Participants have shown professional interest to hear about organization of distribution, columns, journalist contributors, their way of work, internet subscription and most important topics which are followed by the newspaper. This newspaper is one of the most successful in France, it has its own printing office and it follows international, national and regional news and it has more readers in its region than some newspapers from the capital.

At the end, group has visited regional TV station, France 3 Alsace. Editor of the evening news has welcomed his Serbian colleagues and was answering to their question on program scheme, production of news and related programmes, his editorial work, freedom of expression within public broadcaster and professional associations in France.

Conclusions/Follow Up All participants of the study visit agreed that it was interesting and motivating for their future work. In their opinion, topics were presented very professionally and promoted CoE values, democracy, rule of law and human rights in the best way. They have learned more about European institutions and organizations and had opportunity to meet their French colleagues and their work 
Participants Serbian journalists 
CoE Secretariat Lejla DERVISAGIC
Total No. Participants
Last Modified


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