On 4 November 2014, during the celebration of the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists, UNESCO’s project Office in Tunisia launched a manual on freedom of expression and public order, which has been prepared within the framework of the project, Training security forces on freedom of expression, freedom of the press and the protection of journalists.
The manual aims to give members of the security forces the tools that would enable them to both accomplish maintenance of order in compliance with human rights, and interact in a professional manner with journalists while guaranteeing their security.
At the regional celebration of the International Day, civil society representatives and media professionals coming from North African countries - Mauritania, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and Libya - discovered the new manual, which is a reference in terms of security sector reform, specifically regarding human rights, freedom of expression and security of journalists.
The project under which the manual has been produced is the first of its kind in the Arab world. Implemented in cooperation with the Tunisian Ministry of Interior Affairs and funded by the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Tunisia, it aims at improving the relations between members of security forces and journalists, which is crucial during periods of democratic transition. The ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Tunisia, Hans van Vloten Dissevelt, attended the launch event.
The training workshops were conducted this year at three locations in Tunis: The National Training School for managers of safety and National Police in Salambo, the National Center for Lifelong Education of the National Security in Carthage Birsa, and the Training Centre for National Security in Tunis Bouchoucha. They were also held in four other regions of Tunisia: Kairouan, Sfax, Zarzis and Kef. All trainings included sessions attended by both members of security forces and journalists.
The Manual on freedom of expression and public order is currently available in French. English and Arabic versions are under preparation and will be released soon.