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His Majesty stress the key to reform is through Press freedom
12 : 09 PM - 03/05/2011

Manama, May. 3 (BNA) -- His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa stressed that Press freedom remains the centre of the Royal reform project.

In a speech on the occasion of World Press Freedom Day, His Majesty added that a free, impartial and independent Press is the backbone of democratic development, a basic human right, and an active partner in maintaining the security and stability of the country.

His Majesty expressed profound appreciation and pride in the people working for media organisations, as well as the Information Affairs Authority, for their sincere and loyal performance during the unfortunate recent events, and their keenness to protect the security and stability of Bahrain.

He expressed confidence that the Bahraini Press family will adhere to principles of the Constitution and the National Action Charter, address national issues with objectivity and reject sectarian divisions.

Coinciding with the twentieth anniversary of the Windhock Declaration- and with this year's freedom of press celebration being held under the slogan '21st Century Media: New Horizon, New Barriers' - His Majesty stated: "We look forward to responsible international media that commits to objectivity and independence, spreading trustworthy information freely, and which demonstrates honesty and credibility in all news, calling for forgiveness between all humans without discrimination or segregation."

"We call upon the humanitarian and professional conscience in all the various types of media- print, audio, visual and electronic- to move away from provoking hatred for racial, national, ethnic, religious or sectarian reasons," he added.

"We also stress the importance of not taking advantage of the media to provoke violence, vandalism or terrorism, or to break the law or violate public morals and people's dignity. We hope that everyone will respect the basics and ethics of journalism, and not violate them for the happiness and prosperity of mankind.

His Majesty concluded in his speech by stating that Freedom of Press and media will always be a motto of the reform project and development process, and we assure all Press and media figures in Bahrain that their rights are preserved, and that no one will be harmed because of peaceful and civilised expressions of opinion under the law.


BNA 0805 GMT 2011/05/03

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