The Slovak Atlantic Commission (SAC), in cooperation with its Tunisian partner the Centre of Mediterranean and International Studies (CEMI), organized a workshop for representatives of Tunisian political parties and civil society organizations (CSOs) focusing on the media coverage of the upcoming elections.

Following more than two years of preparations and drafting, the Tunisian Parliament recently adopted a new Constitution, paving the way for parliamentary and presidential elections to be held in December 2014. Given the important role of the media during elections, the SAC and CMIS organized a workshop on 30 March and 1 April in Tunis to sensitize representatives of political parties and CSOs with international standards and best practices in the media coverage of elections and on ways to improve news reporting in the run up to elections.

“Media monitoring is an effective tool to hold the media to account. I hope that the Slovak experience in this respect will be useful for our Tunisian colleagues in their election-focused activities. Such monitoring would provide feedback to citizens on the quality of information about the elections” said Rasto Kuzel of MEMO 98 who conducted the workshop.

The workshop focused on a number of topics, including the problems of the media coverage of the 2011 elections, the media coverage by traditional and new media and methods of monitoring political and electoral coverage.

The event took place as a part of the SlovakAid-funded project “Slovakia and Tunisia: Cooperation for Success” that anticipates to contribute to the security sector reform (SSR) in Tunisia, and will be further followed be a series of expert and experience-sharing activities, particularly the participation of Tunisian experts at MENA region focused discussion panel at the GLOBSEC 2014 conference in Bratislava, visit of members of the Slovak Parliament in Tunis, as well as a release of an expert publication on Slovak experience with SSR.