Monthly Archives: May 2014

Internship placement at “Arab Institute for Democracy”, Tunis

Are you interested in doing an internship in Tunisia? Our Tunisian partner organisation "Arab Institute for Democracy" is urgently looking for volunteers for an internship from July. The organisation is based in Tunis, and here you find the Website  and the Facebook page of this young and still small organisation. It works in the areas of democracy promotion, human rights, local governance, and political consensus. In the following you find the call for applications. If you are interested, please get in touch with us (14km) at, and we will send you further documents. Please note that the internship is unpaid. In the case of a successful application, we will take a facilitation fee of 40 Euros.   Hello, we (Wafa and Emna from Arab Institute for Democracy) are looking for a volunteer to join our team! Here are the details: Period of time: 1 to 3 months (between July 2014 – February 2015) Tasks and duties Write and edit press release Help organize workshops and conferences Prepare correspondence as needed Help prepare bulk mailings Proofreading of brochure and website posts Other duties as assigned Preferable experience: Marketing Building strategic partnership Fundraising Study background: Political science, human rights, sociology, law school, other relevant areas Qualifications: Outstanding writing skills in English, and French if possible Basic knowledge of computer and data entry Basic knowledge of nonprofit organization policy Profile: Pleasant manner, patience, problem-solving ability, dependability and positive attitude Good at working within a team Support: Training for this position will be provided. In addition, the program manager and the program coordinator will be available for questions and assistance. Introduction to the culture, the country and the traditions Any help and advices needed about places to visit, safety etc. Age Requirement: Above 18 Time commitment: At least 4 days a week (from 4 to 6 hours a day) Flexibility of days and hours of working is required.  

From Libya to Berlin: Study Trip on Youth Engagement

In the context of the EU project “Civil Initiatives Libya” 14km is currently organising a study trip for ten young Libyans to Berlin. The trip will take place from 14 to 21 September, 2014 under the topic "Promoting the civic and political engagement of youth".  The visitors will meet different youth organisations and other interesting initiatives and institutions from the area of youth work in Berlin. There will be a lot of time for mutual exchange on civil and political engagement of young people in Germany and Libya. Moreover, the programme includes a German-Libyan BarCamp in which concrete projects can be developed jointly with the Libyan youth and strategies and methods for youth participation and engagement can be discussed. Interested Libyan youth can currently apply with CIL for the participation in the study trip. Ideally, applicants are between 18 and 30 years old and already active in a civil society organisation in the country. More information on the study trip as well as the application forms are available from The Libya Herald has already published a short article on the study trip.  

“The media system always adapts itself to the winners” – Report on our discussion about the state of the media in Egypt

Shortly before the elections in Egypt, on May 21 Egyptian media experts discussed the state of the media in Egypt. The event was organised by 14km and Reporters Without Borders and took place at the  Zentrum für Kunst und Urbanistik (ZK/U) . First, the panel participants outlined the Egyptian media landscape and gave information on the working conditions of journalists in Egypt. A first conclusion was that the number of the imprisoned, harassed and murdered journalist in the country has reached a record, while fact-based journalism is still rare. A reason for hope is, however, the burgeoning citizen journalism.   Mohamed Selim Khalil, Egyptian journalist, lecturer at the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität in Münster and media analyst with research focus on political communication in the Arab world criticised the lack of basic journalistic ethics in Egypt : "The media system always adapts itself to the winners." According to him, in Egypt there is only one narrative, and it is controlled by the state. The media are not independent but closely linked with the Ministry of Information. Thus, in this politically turbulent time, the media are also in a chaotic state. The Egyptian journalist and former vice-director of the Egyptian state-owned TV station Nile-TV Shahira Amin, who quit her job during the protests in 2011 to join the demonstrators and to protest against the state-controlled reporting on the revolution, told the audience that until now she is being ignored by some of her colleagues or is even treated with hostility because she is being seen as a traitress. She noted that journalists in Egypt are hardly trained in journalistic techniques, instead they learn how to follow the official line of the authorities. Currently this line is defined by the military, "censorship is back". Christoph Dreyer, press officer and Middle East expert at Reporters Without Borders, explained this with the fact that the freedom of press, which is recognised in the new Egyptian Constitution, is not being implemented; permanent exceptions are justified by the necessity of fighting terrorism. Large parts of the political landscape are censored, and there is no public discourse about the political events in the country. Also Farid Farid, media coordinator for Middle East and North Africa at  Transparency International, saw no practical effects of the civil rights and liberties defined in the Constitution. He criticised the journalistic practices of the corrupt state media which even fabricate and exaggerate artificial news, thereby distracting from the really important issues. Following the first panel discussion, various independent blogs and bloggers from Egypt were introduced in a brief overview, to discuss the meaning of citizen journalism for critical reporting in Egypt. Regarding this development, all panelists saw reason to hope for an improvement of the situation, as an alternative reporting through social media and open media platforms is now becoming more and more possible. The Egyptians acquired a liking for this new-discovered freedom, said Shahira Amin, and also Farid Farid saw in the new blogs a symbol of hope. However, Christoph Dreyer critically noted that the online social media in Egypt are used only by a minority of people and that still numerous censorship options exist. A question from the audience inquired into who really stands behind the censorship in Egypt. The answer was that censorship needs to be regarded as a mix of several measures. The major media institutions in Egypt are state media, which set the agenda, or media outlets influenced by the state media, who stay loyal to the businessmen from the Mubarak era. In addition, there is a self-censorship of the journalists who do not want to lose their jobs and who therefore adapt to the state narrative. At the same time, critical journalists are always in danger of being accused by prosecutors as terrorists or being attacked on the street by mobs. In the face of the recent turbulent political developments in Egypt, more and more people desire peace, order and security and many of them hope to get this from the presidential candidate Al-Sisi. For Mohamed Selim Khalil this hope lies elsewhere. Asked by the audience whether one could even speak about a revolution, given that everything remained the same concerning the ruling elites, he replied: "We do not need a revolution, we need media, real media. » --- The event was presented by Frédérique Lang (14km). Other contributors from 14km included Anja Gebel, Helena Burgrova, Eugenie Rooke, Elisa Totino, Andreas Fricke and Steffen Benzlers, and Christoph Dreyer from Reporters Without Borders.

This was our Arab Film and Discussion Event about Lebanon

Around 40 visitors came on 13 May to our 7th Arab film and discussion evening in Zille-Haus in Berlin Moabit. The focus this time was Lebanon. After the screening of the documentary "Lebanon – Resisting Lunacy" by Uwe-S. Tautenhahn, Henrik Meyervon, a Middle East expert from the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung, explained the current situation in the country. Tautenhahn's film tells the story of two Lebanese women living in Germany who had decided after the war in Lebanon in 2006, to travel to their home country in order to report on the consequences of the conflict. They portray a country in which the cities and infrastructures were heavily damaged. Sixteen years after the end of the civil war that shook Lebanon from 1975 to 1990, the July War plunged the country into another crisis. Therefore the words of a taxi driver interviewed in the film are very representative of the situation: "Like everything necessary (...), that sometimes you have to return the clock, so there is anytime again and again war in Lebanon". Roads and factories were bombed, the economy was destroyed. The country was hesitating between hopeful optimism and resignation. While the Lebanese government condemned the attacks by Hezbollah against Israeli militias, the 33-day War united the religious divisions in Lebanon against the common enemy, Israel. The projection was followed by a discussion about the  film as well as the current situation in Lebanon. The guest speaker was Henrik Meyer, Lebanon expert at the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung. After a brief sketch of the Lebanese political situation in the early 2000s, he explained how Hezbollah could take its outstanding position in the country after the withdrawal of Syrian troops from Lebanon in 2005 and what dynamic led to the Israel-Lebanon war, which caused in the a very short periode of time a massive migration flow. Just a week after the start of the conflict arrived just in Damascus (Syria) 1 ½ million refugees from Lebanon. Hereafter the following topics were discussed with the audience : Which consequences of the conflict can still be seen today in Lebanon and to what extent the local population got used to the state of war as a normal state. A young man with Palestinian family in southern Lebanon gave us information about his own impressions and completed the picture of a population which is trying to get over the trauma of the war and to build its own country again. The event was organized and moderated by Andreas Fricke (14km). Text and Photography by Elisa Totino, editing Steffen Benzlers (both 14km). At the organization helped Eugénie Rooke (intern at 14km) and Anja Gebel (14km), and the team from the Zille-Haus. El Reda Restaurant in Moabit sponsored with delicious Lebanese specialities. The Youth of the Zille-Haus  is supported by the Evangelical clubhouse. We thank all our guests for coming! In regular intervals we screen films which deal with different Arab countries and subsequently discuss the films and the current social and political situation in the respective countries with guests from Berlin Moabit as well as with country experts, always aiming to make links to North-South relationships.   The next Arab Film and Discussion Event will take place in the second half of June and will be about Tunisia. The project receives financial support in the context of the quarter management Moabit Ost through funds from the Programme Social City (EU, Federal Government, and Federal State of Berlin).   Movie preview / Trailer   (In the international version with English subtitles – we screened the original film with German subtitles) Details about the film     Publications from the FES on the subject (in German): Vogt, Achim (2013): Hizbullah in der Krise :Verschiebungen im libanesischen Machtgefüge? Bickel, Markus (2007): UNIFIL und die politische Krise im Libanon : Mission zwischen allen Fronten?

Event: The State of the Egyptian Media, Berlin, 21 May 2014, 7pm

Egyptian citizen journalist Lilian Wagdy provides evidence of military abuses in an interview with a local TV station. Picture courtesy of Hossam el-Hamalawy on Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0). 14km e.V. and Reporters Without Borders e.V. would like to cordially invite you to our upcoming event on the state of the Egyptian media. In the form of a panel discussion we would like to discuss the Egyptian media landscape and the working situation of journalists in Egypt. In addition, we would also like to deal with the topic of citizen media and its (actual and potential) role in the Egyptian media landscape and for critical reporting in Egypt. We are happy to discuss this topic with you as well with the following interesting guests who will be on the panel:  Christoph Dreyer, Middle East expert and responsible for public relations at Reporter without Borders since 2013. Previously he wrote reports about the Arab and Muslim world for radio channels, online media and newspapers. He was editor for Reuters und regional correspondent for the Deutsche Presse-Agentur dpa. Shahira Amin an Egyptian journalist and former deputy head of Egyptian state-owned Nile TV. She resigned from the position on February 3, 2011, in the midst of the Egyptian revolution, due to her disapproval of the channel's coverage of the events. Shahira Amin has been a correspondent for CNN’s weekly program Inside Africa for 8 years. Mohamed Selim Khalil, Egyptian journalist (e.g. for the Daily News Egypt) and media analyst with a research emphasis on Political Communication in the Arab World, currently lecturer at the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität in Münster, Germany. In several articles he criticised the lack of press freedom and the deterioration of journalist's work conditions in Egypt. Farid Farid, Middle East and North Africa Media Coordinator at Transparency International. Previously, he worked as an online journalist with SBS World News Australia. He has also published in academic and news publications such as Le Monde Diplomatique, Al Jazeera English, Social Semiotics and Sydney Morning Herald. We would be happy to see you at the event: «The State of the Egyptian Media» on May 21, 2014 from 7 pm at Zentrum für Kunst und Urbanistik (ZK/U), Siemensstraße 27, Berlin. The event will take place in English.