Conference on psychotrauma: Media-govt partnership being forged to protect people: Sherry -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Conference on psychotrauma: Media-govt partnership being forged to protect people: Sherry

ISLAMABAD: Information Minister Sherry Rehman on Saturday said the government as the primary guarantor of public and national security was forging a partnership with the media to protect its people against terrorism.

At the same time, she said, the official policy on facilitating the growth of an independent and self-regulating media was also being pursued with full vigour.

She was addressing the 1st International Conference on Psychotrauma entitled “Media and Terrorism” organised by the National University of Sciences and Technology (NUST) here.

Sherry spoke on one of the most critical issues facing Pakistan – the symbiotic relationship between the media and terrorism, and how it’s impacting on the Pakistani people in troubled times.

“We are living in a world today where crime has become borderless, global economic shocks are creating ripple-effects for local prices and incomes; and security of life and property has become vulnerable. Thus, we are witnessing the globalization of crises and a resultant public trauma,” she said.

In this environment of collective security stresses and threats, she said, the media has a very important role to play — to inform the people of the cold, hard realities on the ground, as well as to guide them on the ways and means to protect themselves from the damage.

The minister underlined the need for looking at ways of how a free media can carry out its principal duty of truthful public information on an ongoing conflict while also providing information that the victims and other affected people can use to cope with the trauma caused by that conflict.

She said in Pakistan the great challenge being faced today by both government and the media was how to confront terrorism not only through tactics and strategies, but also through a qualitative approach of extending humane care.

“So, our combined efforts must also be geared towards shielding our people, especially our children, youth, women and senior citizens, against the emotional and psychological excesses that terrorism brings with it wherever it strikes,” she maintained.

She appreciated NUST for its initiative of bringing together the national and international specialists to discuss a phenomenon that ‘impacted on each one of us and our families’.

Experts from the United Kingdom, Turkey, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Australia and Saudi Arabia are participating in the conference to share their views.
Source: Daily Times
Date:8/31/2008