Monday, June 30, 2008

International Media Council Awards

The Next Century Foundation International Media Councils Awards 2008 The Oxford and Cambridge Club, Pall Mall, Wednesday 7th May.

Journalists and editors from the Arab World, Israel and the UK were given a special prize in London for producing consistently balanced reporting on the Middle East. The presentation of the awards was unusual in itself in that it brought together journalists from all sides in this troubled region. The award ceremony was hosted by Lord Stone of Blackheath and Ms Dalia Salaam Risani. The ceremony was attended by senior figures from the Arab, Israeli and British media as well as diplomats.
The annual award ceremony was first launched in 2005 by the International Media Council, a body set up by the Next Century Foundation. This NGO works in support of peace initiatives in the Middle East. The award is in recognition of the vital role that the media can play in contributing to understanding, without which no peace process is possible. Each year the Next Century Foundation honours editors and journalists in this way.

The Peace Through Media Awards (Honorary) Each winner was presented with an olive tree.
Yehuda Litani, Editor, Al Usbua, Channel 2 and Columnist, Yedioth Aharanoth and Haaretz, In recognition of his tireless work for rapprochement and peace. Prize presented by Ian Black, Middle East Editor, The Guardian.
Roula Khalaf, The Financial Times. In recognition of her high standards of reporting and the quality of her news analysis. Prize presented by Ms Annie Henshaw, Director of Olives et al.

Lifetime Achievement Award (Honorary)
Bernard Josephs, Political Editor, the Jewish Chronicle. In recognition of his efforts to improve understanding of the Middle East as well as his work against disinformation and incitement to hatred. Prize presented by Rabbi Herschel Gluck.

The following winners each received a Cash Prize of 1000 pounds
Special Award for an outstanding contribution to broadcasting
Damien Charton, France 24, for reporting during fighting in Gaza in 2007. Prize presented by William Morris, Secretary General The Next Century Foundation.
Zeina Fayadh, Program editor and Presenter, ANB Satellite Television. Prize presented by Mrs Ibtisam Auchi

Cutting Edge Award
Adel Darwish, columnist, Daily Mail; TV commentator. Prize presented by Louisa Brooke, BBC
Robert Tait, Iran Correspondent, The Observer. Prize presented by David Gardner, Financial Times.
Mina al Oraibi, Sharq al Awsat. Prize presented Mrs Ibtisam Auchi.

Breakaway Award
Sharif Nashashibi, Arab Media Watch, Prize presented by Jihad Al Khazan Editor at large of Al Hayatt Newspaper.
Wijdan Mahdi Ali Alsalih, columnist in Friendship magazine; freelance journalist based in Basrah. Prize presented by William Morris, Next Century Foundation

Two Awards were not presented this year but postponed until next year. The winners were prevented from leaving the war zones on which they report.
Reporters working in War Zones
Mr Sami Abdul Shafi, Gaza Correspondent, The Independent and The Guardian.
Saif Al-Khayat, Correspondent, Elaph, Baghdad.
Photographs are available by request direct to


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