Palermo conference: Speeches by Vito Lo Monaco and Giulio Francese

The presidents of the Centro Pio Latorre and of the Regional Order of Journalists of Sicily congratulated Ossigeno for the first 10 years of its activity by hosting a conference in Palermo, as they had done previously in July 2008, with the meeting to mark the public debut of the Observatory

“Press freedom now faces a double attack: from power and from those journalists who have sold out to other interests and feed fake news. Journalism is a “fourth power” but it is also a fundamental right which, when violated, undermines democracy itself “, said Vito Lo Monaco, president of the Pio La Torre Centre, opening the conference entitled ” Art. 21, freedom of the press and the map of journalists threatened in Italy “, promoted jointly by the Regional Order of Journalists of Sicily, by Ossigeno per l’informazione and by the Pio La Torre Centre, and hosted on the 13th December 2018 by the Sicily Foundation in Villa Zito.

Lo Monaco added that “Ten years ago – – from this same room the formation of Ossigeno was announced. Today’s meeting gives us the opportunity to take stock of its activities and to recall other anniversaries; one hundred years of the parliamentary press, the seventy years from the Declaration on Human Rights with the Article 19 which establishes freedom of the press and seventy years from the Italian Constitution and its Article 21”.

Giulio Francese, president of the Sicilian Order of Journalists thanked Ossigeno for its work in the interest of the media sector. The great merit of Ossigeno, he underlined, is to have raised the perception of the danger of threats to journalists. The awareness has increased a lot, but even today unfortunately the public reacts strongly to these threats only in the face of absolutely striking events. Instead, we must react to all threats and give maximum solidarity to journalists who are unjustly affected because of their work. Greater effort is required” , he concluded, “by the entire sector and everyone must commit themselves more to being good journalists “.


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