Network of Iraqi Reporters for Investigative Journalism

Network of Iraqi Reporters for Investigative Journalism

NIRIJ Declares Competition Winners in their  “Second Gathering of Professional Journalism”

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The “Second Gathering of Professional Journalism” declared at the end of the activities organized in the city of Sulaymaniyah from 10 to 13 January, the results of the best journalistic works achieved in ‘descriptive journal writings’ and  ‘investigative reports’.

In the sphere of press reports, Journalist ‘Mezr Kamal’ won the first prize for his report “Stories of Fatalities by Tear Gas Bombs in Iraq’s Demonstrations”

As for Journalist ‘Nozt Shamdeen, he received the second prize for his report “Al-Khasfa…Daesh Biggest Mass Grave”.

The third prize went to the work done by journalist ‘Mohamed Al-Zeady’ for a report entitled “Foreign Currency Trafficking in Iraq…Smuggling from Kurdistan to Baghdad Escalates the Phenomenon”

Meanwhile, three journalists received appreciative prizes in recognition of the descriptive journal reports submitted to the competition and raced strongly for the most excellent reports published in the last two years; namely:

– ‘Bassem Francis’ for his report “How Daesh, Absence of State Authority and Conflict among Militant Forces, Write the Extinction of Christian Existence in Iraq”;

– ‘Manar Al-Zubeedy’ for her report “Tragedy of loss…Lifelong Shelterless Women in Iraq”;

–  ‘Ali Ghazwan’ for his report “Tagetting Iraq’s Lawyers…Programmed Violations Hindering their Delivery of Legal Role.”

In the sphere of investigative reports, ‘Ninewa investigative team’ received the gathering’s first prize for its report “Women in Daesh Families, Pay Taxes in Rape and Prostitution…. Begetting a Generation with New-fangled Extremism”

Journalist ‘Kamal Ayaash’ obtained the second prize for his investigation “Bombardment of Fallujah in 2003: Generation of Malformed Births”.

Both ‘Ahmad Al-Rabeehe’ and ‘Hassan Al-Naseri’ got the third prize for their report “No Deterrence Can Ever Stop Mendicancy and Human Trafficking Gangs in the Absence of Security and Law”

The organizing bodies of this worthwhile press gathering had actually received 59 journalistic materials competing in the sphere of ‘descriptive reports and journalistic investigations’.

‘ The Second  gathering of Professional Journalism’ sponsored by the NIRIJ Network of Investigative Journalism was held in the city of Sulaymaniyah with the participation of 100+ attendees including journalists, academicians and students from different information colleges. The gathering held six public debate sessions and meetings to exchange views and information, with the contribution of more than 30 speakers including press experts, academicians and leaders from many organizations concerned with journalism profession.

In the meantime, the gathering included two training workshops focusing on the art of writing  journalistic ‘descriptive and feature reports, during which 40 participants including journalists and students received intensive training submitted by two instructors, ‘Lars Muller’ and Kammy Al-Melhem’.

Participants in the two training workshops included undergraduates from the two information colleges of Takrit and Mosul universities, as well as proficient journalists, and other chiefs of press establishments operating throughout the country.

In the course of the gathering, journalists and academicians declared the ‘formation of a press lobby’ including a number of distinguished public opinion leaders and chiefs of independent mass media and academicians, with the objective of achieving and maintaining the  genuine ‘freedom of press work’ within the ceiling already stipulated in Iraq’s constitution.

Among other issues, the debate sessions held in the course of the second press gathering meetings, discussed the professional, legal and financial challenges facing journalists and press establishments in general. They debated the status quo of the Kurdish press within the existing societal components press and independent journalism in the province of Kurdistan. Meanwhile, a session attended by three women journalists focused mainly on the present conditions under which women journalists are working and the challenges met in working environment.

Participants in the gathering, including chiefs of press establishments, veteran journalists, together with professors from 5 Iraqi universities and some activists from the civil society, submitted working papers and quintessence  of   the past experiences gained  during  their coverage of happenings  amidst  the crises, violence and threats resulting from the existing political conflicts.

In the meantime, participants in the gathering discussed the role played by the media in creating change and sharing in keeping popular peace in a society with different national, religious and sectarian communities, and how to meet the challenges encountered by Iraqi media people in their efforts to offer insightful, professional and influential press that can above all stick to investigation, objectivity, precision, neutrality and balance.