Highlight

Debate and raising awareness on violations of press freedom in 11 countries have been the aims of the 12 European partners engaged until last January in the project "Safety Net for European Journalists", led by OBC and co­funded by the European Union and the Autonomous Province of Trento.

On January 28th we presented the closing event at the European Parliament during the seminar entitled "Je suis Charlie. Media Freedom in the EU and South­Eastern Europe". All audio-files of the speeches can be found here .

Here the analytic report "Building a Safety Net for European Journalists" by Eugenia Siapera, professor of Dublin City University and the handbook for threatened journalists "Safety Net Manual" published by SEEMO (both free downloadable)

22 march

21/03/2019 - 

Women

They live in a highly patriarchal society. Yet, with courage and resoluteness, they are building their present and a more right future for themselves and their children. Meet Shaqe, File, Engjellushe and many other women living in northern Albania. Together with RTM and Albania News we told their stories in a short documentary.

Anna, Maria, and many others have other stories to tell. In Greece, thousands of migrant women work as domestic helpers and carers. They face a difficult life, suspended between legality and informal sector, country of origin and destination, pride and regret.

Very soon Chechen women will be able to take taxis driven by women and only for women. The initiative sponsored by an Arab investment fund has caused very different reactions. Is it just another step in Chechnya's progressive Islamisation?

Slack chat! "Covering European issues with data", Friday 22 April 2019, 6PM CET. The chat is jointly organised by the Data Journalism Awards and the European Data Journalism Network. Giorgio Comai from OBCT will be one of the speakers. To follow and join the chat you need to register here

8 march

08/03/2019 - 

Revisionism

Republika Srpska has appointed two new international commissions tasked with establishing the crimes committed in Srebrenica and those committed against the Serbian population in Sarajevo. A group of academics and various analysts highlight its revisionist intentions. The report by Alfredo Sasso.

“Looking at the issue of historic revisionism and coming to terms with its own recent and not-so-recent history, Croatia seems to be one of the EU's most problematic countries”, writes Ivana Polić.

More in the news: the case of the Serbian prime minister and the child she recently had from her partner; the wave of strikes and demand for better salaries in Kosovo; the difficult living conditions of the Afghan immigrants in Turkey. We wish you a good Women’s Day!

22 febbraio

22/02/2019 - 

Vulnerabilities

Several years ago, Slovak journalist Ján Kuciak began investigating organized crime in his country but he was shot to death before he and his colleagues at OCCRP published their findings. Kuciak’s murder highlighted Slovakia’s vulnerabilities to the nexus of crime and political corruption. New findings on this deadly linkage are now revealed in an article by OCCRP and its partners.

Europe is rapidly warming and Croatian cities are no exception to this. However local authorities’ lack of interest in the increase of average temperatures does not help determining people’s vulnerabilities to the phenomenon.

Disinformation campaigns, dubious practices on social media, hackings, murkey financing of political campaigns: some reports and inquiries suggested Russian interference with the integrity of democratic processes. Russians or not new structural vulnerabilities to our democracies are there for anyone to exploit. In the next few months, OBCT, within the ESVEI project, will run a number of articles, interviews, guest posts, and reports focusing in particular on the policies and practices that can mitigate these risks.

Call: OBCT together with ECPMF and other organizations launched a call for justice and accountability of state authorities in Slovakia on the anniversary of the murder of investigative journalist Ján Kuciak

8 febbraio

08/02/2019 - 

Margins

Both in Skopje and in Athens, margins were narrow for the parliamentary approval of the Prespa agreement. Now that, after Macedonia, also Greece has ratified it, Skopje is set to restart its Euro-Atlantic integration process. Ilcho Cvetanoski looks at the reactions to the Greek “yes” on the northern side of the border.

Students have exited the margins of public debate in Albania, and actually gained the spotlight thanks to their months-long protests. They call for a quality university system that is accessible to everyone – but their demands also touch on democracy, Europe, and women’s role. Nicola Pedrazzi met Gresa Hasa.

17 million EU citizens have moved from one member state to another. They’re entitled to vote at the European elections in the place where they live, but only about 5% of them did it in the last elections. In this way they remain at the margins of European politics, which should become more transnational instead. An article for EDJNet.

25 january

24/01/2019 - 

Guns

In Turkey, more and more citizens own firearms, while almost 85% of the 25 million guns in the country are not registered. In the last four years, the rate of gun violence episodes committed by individuals in Turkey has increased by 69%. A report by Burcu Karakaş.

Guns are often used during robberies in Kosovo. The death of a policeman and a bank robber during a recent robbery attempt in the town of Istog, sparked a debate in the country over the significant increase in violent crimes in the last few years. A report by Majlinda Aliu.

More in the news: the Greek opposition rallies in Athens against the Prespa Agreement; Sofia and Sarajevo among the most polluted capitals in Europe; there are over a thousand ongoing trials against Croatian journalists or media, and the list is not complete.

11 gennaio

11/01/2019 - 

Disinformation

The term "fake news" in itself is not new at all. But in recent years it has become an issue with new implications. The unprecedented proliferation of disinformation and its potential to spread without limits through the digital space have led political organizations, governments, NGOs and academics to try to better grasp the phenomenon and to develop solutions. A new special dossier by OBCT presents an overview of these efforts and the ongoing debate.

30 novembre

30/11/2018 - 

Responses

Murders, physical assaults, frivolous lawsuits, online harassment and more. Journalists in Europe are facing many threats because of their work. What are the tools and facilities that could help protecting them? A brand-new special dossier on our Media Freedom Resource Centre has tried to collect the responses from Europe to news professionals at risk.

Turkey’s press is under siege. Over 90% of national media is controlled by pro-government companies. More than 160 journalists are in jail. Dozens of newspapers, TV and radio channels have been closed. Has the European public opinion become accustomed to such news? And how the solidarity actions from Europe are helping Turkish journalists? An IPI event covered by OBCT provided responses to all these questions.

Amer is one of the 46 children from the Bjelave orphanage taken away from the siege of Sarajevo in July 1992. After over a year he received the response he was waiting for. Upon learning that his father died on the front in 1993, Amer started to look for news of his mother. Now, thanks to OBTC’s articles and a Rai report, mother and son have reunited.

16 novembre

16/11/2018 - 

What do Journalists need?

Murders, physical assaults, frivolous lawsuits, online harassment and more. Journalists in Europe are facing many threats because of their work. What are the tools and facilities that could help protecting them? A brand-new special dossier on our Media Freedom Resource Centre has tried to provide a handy reference for news professionals at risk.

Wikicontest! Wikipedia users are invited to join Wiki4MediaFreedom contest, a contest promoted by OBCT for the second year in a row. The deadline is November 30, 2018.

Call for applications: The "Rijeka in Flux: Borders and Urban Change after World War II" project, hosted at the University of British Columbia Okanagan, and funded by a Social Science and Humanities Research Council Insight Grant, is seeking to recruit students for one MA and one PHD positions the two following positions. Applications will be accepted starting October 15, 2018, and are due at the latest on January 15, 2019. Info

2 novembre

31/10/2018 - 

Stop

About 2,800km hydropower plants are being built in the Balkans, posing the risk of drying and diverting streams, flooding areas, and so on. To stop those environmental risks, the Balkan Rivers Tour activists have paddled one month along the rivers of the region.

Ingush citizens have mobilized in order to stop border changes between Ingushetia and Chechnya, fearing the eventual merging of the two countries. “We're constantly losing our lands, and this should be stopped,” protesters argue, claiming that they are ready to fight.

It was not obvious that Zaev's government could win the qualified parliamentary majority needed to amend Macedonia's official name. Yet the opposition was not able to stop the opening of the process of constitutional revision, thanks to the defection of a handful of MPs.

Wikicontest! Wikipedia users are invited to join Wiki4MediaFreedom contest, a contest promoted by OBCT for the second year in a row. The deadline is November 30, 2018.

19 ottobre

19/10/2018 - 

Sons

Was Tito the son of a migrant worker coming from the Italian Alps? Since decades, the inhabitants of the Vallarsa valley (where the surname “Broz” does exist) believe so. Marco Abram explores the roots of this legend.

Amer and Alen were young children when they were displaced from sieged Sarajevo to Italy, where they were adopted. Yet their relatives were still alive in Bosnia: with the help of OBCT, they have finally managed to meet again.

More in the news: the trial against Golden Dawn members in Greece; post-electoral scenarios in Bosnia and Herzegovina; the possible swap of territories between Kosovo and Serbia.