New media strategy to deal with challenges of the 21st Century
Egypt, Politics, 6/22/2000
Egypt's Minister of Information Safwat El Sherif told Arab Information Ministers Gathering "We shall Open up on the world from a position of confidence. We have the potentials and the tools and are capable of facing competition".
Addressing the inaugural session Wednesday of the 33rd meeting of the Council of Arab Information Ministers, Safwat El Sherif said that in addressing the world, Arab Media places the interests of the nation above all other considerations. He called for training the young generations of media people to shoulder responsibility. "They are the hope of the future. "
El Sherif noted that the Conference of Arab Information Ministers is the first in the new Millennium.
"The conference is being held when the banners of victory are fluttering on south Lebanon after years of struggle and heroic resistance," El Sherif said.
"This Arab victory is the first in the new century after the great crossing (of the Suez canal) and the glorious victory realized by the Arab nation in October 1973," Safwat El Sherif said.
Informaton Minister saluted the President, government and people of Lebanon and said he was confident that more victories should be achieved until Palestinian land is restored in full, the Palestinian state is established and the Golan is returned to the motherland.
El Sherif hoped that the new Century would be a century of Arab prosperity and media progress.
Information Minister said that the President and government and people of Egypt welcomed Arab Information Ministers and conveyed to them the greetings of President Hosni Mubarak.
He said that Arab Information Ministers express the nation's thinking, and its aspirations and ambitions and it was a good opportunity that they meet to exchange views on the present and the future, with its challenges.
"Our sea is our Arab culture. Our ship is the ship of values and ethics of our nation. Our shore is the one where the customs, traditions, aspirations and ambitions of our peoples grew, from the ocean to the gulf, " El-Sherif said.
El Sherif told Arab Information Ministers that this conference is the first in the new millennium, and in the 21st Century.
Their decisions will be a document to be scrutinized by future generations to see how the leaders of media thought at the beginning of a century that is characterized by open skies, communications and informatics.
Minister of Information added "We carry a trust, which was placed, on our shoulders by the leaders of this nation. We shoulder a responsibility towards our nation in the age of globalization. We have made our preparations. We possess the tools of the age. Our Arab nation has satellites, various production centers and a Distinguished International Media Production City.
"Today, we have dozens of channels and radio broadcasts general and specialized. Some represent the media of the state. Some are owned by society. Some are owned by a group of the sons of this nation." El-Sherif said
He called upon all to be aware "That we are all in one boat. It is true that technology has brought down barriers and negated distances. It is true that ownership is varied. But what it is truer is that no one has the right to impose his custodianship on society.
Information Minister also said "We should pause to contemplate the concept of the relationship between ownership and freedom."He stressed that freedom and the right of society and the nation are all protected by law.
El-Sherif asked Arab Information Ministers, at their first meeting in the new century, to tell future generations, our vision emanates from our values, ethics, characteristics, customs and traditions. He said:
Arab media believes in the right of choice. An Arab should have an international vision. We shall open up on the world, with all it has to offer, from a position of confidence. We are capable of facing competition with the potentials and tools we possess.
Arab media, in its message to its nation and in addressing the world around it, shall have integrated tools and means, whatever their diversity, and shall place the interests of the nation above all considerations.
Our experts are called upon to plan an Arab Information network. We have prepared a national Site on the ground network and hope that it will be turned in the future into an Arab Site on the satellite.
Our experts are also called upon to turn sincere words said at meetings of coordination into reality and fact for the interest of the sons of society and to harness potentials in a common effort.
Our experts are called upon to give attention to generations of young media people and to draw up plans for these generations so that they may acquire more knowledge and to give them awareness and preparation to shoulder responsibility. They represent a fertile and promising national soil. They are the plants of today and the hope of the future.
Our establishments are required to drop all complexes of individuality so that our abilities and potentials may be integrated. There is no survival for isolated islands.
Let us tell generations our message is clear. We preserve our dignity and the right of our nation and the right of our nation to a dialogue with a true word and free opinion. We respect freedom and the right of others.
Freedom to enlighten the way. Freedom which does not divide or disperse. Freedom which does not put out the lights of hope. The media of the Arabs is for all the Arabs. It addresses its sons with the language of the age, the language of science and work.
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