The importance of media in promoting the Palestinian cause and raising awareness on their issues was the main focus during a virtual workshop organized by the Union of OIC News Agencies. Hissein Brahim Taha, the secretary general of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), emphasized the critical role of media in keeping Palestine and Al-Quds Al-Sharif at the forefront of political and media agendas.
Taha expressed his concerns over the media war waged by the Israeli occupation, which targets news organizations and their staff and promotes false narratives that deny the existence of Palestinians and their rights. The OIC recently condemned the remarks made by Israeli Minister of Finance Betzalel Smotrich, who denied the existence of the Palestinian people, their history, and their legitimate rights. The organization called on the international community to reject and condemn such dangerous and racist allegations, which could undermine security, stability, and fuel violence, tension, and hatred.
The workshop, titled “Media Circulation of Terms of the Palestinian Cause,” brought together diplomats, representatives of news agencies, and media groups to discuss the role of media in shaping the discourse on Palestinian issues. Assistant Secretary General for Palestine and Al-Quds Affairs Samir Bakr Diab delivered Taha’s speech, which stressed the importance of using accurate and balanced language while reporting on Palestinian matters.
Diab urged media organizations to avoid rhetoric that incites violence or hatred and to offer a correct narrative, emphasizing terms such as occupation, racism, ethnic cleansing, the Nakba, and colonial settlement. Participants explored the significance of using unified terminology when reporting on the Palestinian cause and the need to steer clear of media bias.
Additionally, they called for the creation of a reference guide for terminology associated with Palestinian issues. This guide would help news agencies confront misinformation and media manipulation through the use of accurate terminology, ensuring that the Palestinian cause is fairly and accurately represented in the media.
In conclusion, the workshop shed light on the crucial role of the media in promoting the Palestinian cause and raising awareness of their issues. By using accurate and balanced language, avoiding incendiary rhetoric, and adhering to a unified terminology, media organizations can contribute to a more informed public discourse and help mobilize support for the Palestinian people.