The Leaders of the National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) and Federazione Nazionale Stampa Italiana (FNSI) held a bilateral meeting on 17 January 2017 in Rome, Italy, at the headquarters of FNSI. The two unions exchanged analyses on the press freedom situation in Somalia and Italy, the working conditions facing journalists and the shared perspective of the need to strengthen the cooperation of NUSOJ and FNSI into more radical phase.
FNSI Secretary General Raffaele Lorusso and NUSOJ Secretary General Omar Faruk Osman led the two delegations to further broaden the scope of bilateral relations since the two unions agreed this cooperation last year. FNSI offered NUSOJ a genuine solidarity and a hand of comradeship.
Both unions re-affirmed their close working relationship and committed themselves to urgently convene joint political workshop in order to strengthen the relations and the cooperation between journalists in Italy and Somalia, and to closely work together in the Executive Committee of the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) where both unions sit.
A lot in the unfolding political situation in Somalia underlined the importance of an increased necessity for FNSI and NUSOJ to work even more closely, defend collectively imperiled journalists’ rights and develop joint programmes to enhance professional capacity of journalists and tackle lack of safety of journalists. The meeting reaffirmed the need to proceed and deepen this joint programme.
A joint session on press freedom and working conditions of journalists was organised in which the leaders of the two unions addressed the situation in their both countries. FNSI and NUSOJ strongly condemned the continued violence and oppression against journalists including killings, arrests and impunity enjoyed predators of media freedom.
The Italian and Somali journalist unions deplored the continued attacks on freedom of association and trade union rights in Somalia, and extolled the historic and favourable decision obtained by NUSOJ at the International Labour Organisation (ILO).
FNSI and NUSOJ evinced their solid commitment to collectively take the bull by the horns and collectively defend journalists’ rights without fear or favour and expose perpetrators of union rights violations.
NUSOJ leaders also held solidarity meetings with the leaders of three Italian trade union federations, namely Confederazione Generale Italiana del Lavoro (CGIL), Confederazione Italiana Sindacati Lavoratori (CISL) and Unione Italiana del Lavoro (UIL).