UNA’s General Assembly adopts resolution to boost role of OIC countries in fighting Islamophobia

October 16, 2017 Off By Web Desk

Jeddah (UNA) � The General Assembly of the Union of News Agencies (UNA), an affiliate of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), adopted a resolution to strengthen the role of the national news agencies in the OIC member states in combating Islamophobia.

At its fifth session held at the OIC headquarters on Sunday, under the chairmanship of Saudi Minister of Culture and Information and Chairman of UNA Executive Council Dr. Awwad bin Saleh Al-Awwad, the General Assembly urged the member news agencies to contribute to the media campaigns launched by the OIC Department of Information to prevent intolerance against Islam and discrimination against Muslims.

The session was held with the participation of delegates from 36 OIC member states, in the presence of OIC Secretary General Dr. Yousef Al-Othaimeen, President of the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) and Chairman of UNA General Assembly Abdullah bin Fahd Al Hussein and UNA Director General Issa Khaireh Robleh.

The General Assembly recommended that the member agencies should avoid any linkage or association between Islam and terrorism, and to refrain from using Islamophobic discourse in the fight against terror, such as describing criminal terrorists as “Islamist” extremists. It also urged the agencies to cooperate in the distribution of periodic news reports on Islam and Muslims, to be specially directed to the West.

The General Assembly stressed the importance of collaboration with the OIC Department of Information to carry out training programs to help develop a critical awareness approach for news coverage as well as developing the abilities to use the Internet in combating misconceptions, forms of intolerance and hate speech.

The General Assembly also recommended the preparation of extensive reports on Muslim religious events, such as Hajj, Ramadan and Eid, and disseminating them to the member agencies. It further recommended cooperation with the OIC Department of Information and the Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO) to organize training programs to help Muslim communities in the West to understand international issues.

The General Assembly directed UNA to participate in the preparation of the OIC Guide to educate the international media on the most important issues and terminologies that are usually misunderstood.

It is noteworthy that the General Assembly adopted on Sunday a resolution on the transformation of the International Islamic News Agency (IINA) into the Union of News Agencies (UNA) of the OIC member states.

Source: International Islamic News Agency