Supporting coexistence and peace… an open discussion to confront hate speech in the Yemeni press


Professor of Media at Sana’a University, Dr. Ali Al-Braihi, said, “Hate speech represents the most important obstacle to social transformations, as it is a hostile culture that can produce catastrophic effects such as murder and genocide.”

In a discussion session on hate speech in the media and how journalists deal with it, organized by the Cultural Media Center in Yemen yesterday, Thursday, in partnership with the International Center for Media and Journalism at the University of Oslo, Al-Buraihi urged to “support the discourse of coexistence and peace by offering university courses in various departments.” To renounce hate speech and promote the values ​​of peace and coexistence.

Meanwhile, Director of the International Center for Press and Media, Una Solberg, said that the discussion session will represent an opportunity to exchange experiences and discuss the effects of hate speech, including ways to combat and reduce it and promote peace journalism and coexistence.

For her part, the head of the Cultural Media Center, Wedad Al-Badawi, stressed the importance of not confusing freedom of opinion with the hate speech that dominates the Yemeni media during the war that has torn the country for years.

Al-Badawi called on Yemeni journalists to do their part to limit the spread of the culture of violence, and to provide targeted media content that rejects hate speech.

In the session, ethical journalism expert Abeer Al-Saadi presented the most important ways to verify news and photos by searching for the source of information, the title of the news and the origin of the content, and ways to verify the authenticity and truth of photos to limit the spread of false and misleading news that aims to spread hatred and violence among people.

Al-Saadi defined hate speech as the most destructive means in society, whether it is written, audio or visual speech aimed at real or symbolic killing of the other, or exclusion and humiliation or the use of insults, slander, humiliation, stigmatization, discrimination, and ending with incitement to murder and violence.

Al-Saadi warned of the danger of the media being a tool for spreading hate speech, calling on journalists to adhere to objectivity, verify news and sources before publishing, and confront hate speech in legal, ethical and professional ways away from responding with the same speech that incites violence.

The session featured a number of interventions by academics and journalists, who stressed the importance of promoting a culture of coexistence and rejecting hate speech and incitement.

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