Institute for War and Peace Reporting | Giving Voice, Driving Change

Tribunal: Jan ‘08

IWPR radio programme Facing Justice gets stamp of approval from broadcasters in the region.
Over the last two months, we have been approached by a number of radio stations interested in rebroadcasting our radio programme Facing Justice, which we produce in co-operation with Radio Free Europe, RFE.

In response to a joint press release issued by the Norwegian and Swiss Embassies in Sarajevo in early December - in which they informed local media about the launch of this project - several local radio stations expressed an interest in this programme and have now started to broadcast it.

This overwhelmingly positive response shows that the programme has filled an important gap with its coverage of war crimes issues.

The editor-in-chief of the Radio Television of the Tuzla canton, Alma Kudzelic, whose radio station has started broadcasting Facing Justice in the second half of December, confirmed this in a recent statement.

“It’s excellent news that a programme like this finally appeared in a radio format. There are some reports on war crimes issues produced for local TV stations, but there’s been a lack of radio programmes focused on this subject. Your project hit the right target,” she said.

Negotiations are ongoing with several other radio stations in Bosnia - including Bosnian Serb Radio Television, RTRS - who have asked about the possibility of broadcasting Facing Justice at a time convenient to them.

In December, we also received very encouraging feedback from Sir Geoffrey Nice, the former prosecutor in the case against ex-Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic, who we interviewed while he was visiting Sarajevo.

Although Nice was very much in demand by local reporters, his high opinion of IWPR - which he considers to be “one of the most reliable sources of information on the Hague tribunal”- helped us secure an interview with him and we were among the very few media who managed to talk to him while he was in the Bosnian capital.

The departure of the former chief prosecutor Carla Del Ponte from the tribunal was the main event in December and we covered it extensively in both Facing Justice and Tribunal Update - and even managed to obtain an exclusive interview with her, which was published in full on December 21.

A transcript of a report on Del Ponte’s last visit to Serbia as chief prosecutor, which was broadcast in our radio programme in December, was among the three most read reports on the RFE website, which has around a million hits each month.

A number of local and international media, including Reuters and the BBC, approached us for an assessment of Del Ponte’s achievements, as we are one of very few organisations which have covered her work from the beginning. This shows that we continue to be recognised as a reliable and respected source and a first port of call for media requiring information on the Hague tribunal.

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