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Globally it is acknowledged that the media has an important and strategic role to play in national integration, reconciliation and peace building. The media can contribute to conflict transformation on one hand and also contribute to the escalation of conflict on the other hand. Therefore, it is generally understood that the media can either make or break peace.

The international experiences revealed that in Kenya the media spread hate messages which created atrocities and led to genocides in early 1990s. Therefore, Media influences to shape perceptions, condition behaviour and impacts the minds, attitudes, emotions of readers and community at large. Fair and non-discriminatory reporting is a prime responsibility of the Media. Ethnic, religious and cultural diversities should be respected and media should not at any point of time attempt to disturb such enabling conditions for their own commercial and economic survival. However, Journalists are “truth tellers” but, media has a moral responsibility to promote reconciliation. The peace journalism is where editors and reporters make choices about what to report and how to report - to create opportunities to value non-violent responses to conflict. The professionalism of Journalists gets eroded due to personal emotions, interest, prejudices, audience preference, lack of ethics, concern for being overly market oriented or economic oriented, influenced by negativism or influenced by elite groups or one-sidedness or socially irresponsiveness and failure to look at diverse perspective.

  • Special programmes were conducted by the Ministry to give wider perspective of the social responsibilities of social media in peace building, reconciliation and support to maintain violence and tensions free atmosphere. Seven District programmes were conducted to Journalists on peace journalism covering about 473 Journalists and the journalists discussed the role of media in conflict transformation, reconciliation and peace building.
  • A national level sensitization should be given to the top level media personnel on disciplined reporting with social responsibility especially on reconciliation, integration and peace building.
  • Action will be taken to institutionalize peace journalism and reconciliation friendly media into the media ethics by working closely with organizations such as Sri Lanka Press Council and Media Ministry.
  • Special Media programmes with peace messages will be disseminated through the media to create a culture for integration, reconciliation, human rights, inclusiveness, equity, tolerance, fairness and peace building.
  • Journalists actively contribute to build an enabling culture for peace by publishing articles related peace building and national integration will be acknowledged and recognized.
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