Increased media cooperation cements ties among nations: Deputy minister
Closer media cooperation helps prop up relations among nations, Deputy Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Hossein Entezami told the visiting Managing Director of Maghreb Arabe Presse (MAP) Khalil Hachimi Idrissi and the Moroccan news agency’s secretary general.
At the meeting, Entezami, who is in charge of the Press Department of the Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance, further said today public diplomacy complements and is at times more effectual than traditional diplomacy. “[President Rouhani’s] Government pays special attention to increased media activities and to [measures to] promote private media, because it views media diplomacy as a pillar of public diplomacy.”
He further said stronger relations among media and journalists coupled with conclusion of sisterhood deals are instrumental in promoting media activities which in turn bolster relations among nations. “One of our policies is to encourage our media to strike sisterhood deals with media outlets in other countries.”
The deputy minister went on to say, “To that end, countries which have had a special place in civilization or those which are effective in the modern world thanks to their intellectual depth have priority status.”
He said Maghreb has a special place in the world of Islam, adding today conditions in the region and in the wider Muslim world require vigilance on the part of media as far as dissemination of information is concerned, because it’s the media that can rein in the extremist, violent ideology that gives rise to Islamophobia and it’s the media that can present a picture of real Islam to the world.
Entezami welcomed the reopening of the Iran bureau of MAP after seven years and said he hoped interactions among the two countries’ media can set the stage for closer bilateral cooperation.
He added that around 150 foreign media outlets have an active presence in Tehran and many other countries cover the Iran news either in cooperation with Iranian reporters or through their own non-resident correspondents.
At the beginning of the meeting which was also attended by Morocco's Charge d’ Affaires in Tehran Mohammad al-Sharigi and the director general of the Foreign Media Department of the Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance, Khalil Hachimi Idrissi expressed pleasure over his Iran visit and the expected resumption of MAP activities in Iran in the near future and said the media play a very special role in bringing nations and countries closer together.
He further said in the modern world, especially when a crisis is brewing, media outlets have a matchless role in enlightening people and raising public awareness and can be effective in ties among nations.
In light of the two countries’ cultural and civilizational proximity, closer media cooperation can lead to expansion of economic, cultural, artistic and tourism cooperation between Rabat and Tehran, Idrissi said.
He concluded, “Strengthened cooperation is what we want, politically and professionally. We hope promotion of media ties between the two countries will result in closer cooperation between the two countries on other fronts.”