Third EU-Western Balkans Media Days held in Montenegro

Discussions will center around freedom guarantees and media sustainability in the region

The third edition of the EU-Western Balkans Media Days has started on Thursday in Podgorica, Montenegro. Organised by the Commission, the Conference gathers around 350 representatives of media and civil society organisations as well as policymakers from the Western Balkans and the EU.

At the two-day event participants are to discuss the role of media in societal changes, its impact on key reforms on the path towards the EU, as well as identify forward-looking actions to strengthen independent media. This year's third edition, in particular, focuses on how to guarantee freedom and sustainability of media in the region and how to ensure support to new generations of journalists.

The discussion about reconciliation and regional cooperation, and overcoming nationalistic narratives will also hold a central place on the conference agenda alongside themes such as the importance of independent reporting, how to avoid manipulation of information and how to enhance public media literacy.

"Freedom of media is one of the fundamental principles of the European Union and a key political indicator in the EU accession process. We must and we will continue to work on concrete ways to sustain and increase independent and professional journalism, help use of new technologies and favour regional cooperation, reconciliation and exchanges. The EU-Western Balkans Media Days are an important step in this direction,” Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, Johannes Hahn said ahead of the conference yesterday.

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