World’s peace is largely determined not only by the good will of politicians, but also the ability of ordinary people to understand each other. Common people seem to be far from the political ambitions, declaration of wars, production and sale of weapons and so on. However, have you ever noticed that in the context of leaders’ friendly handshakes "people from the street" are full of nationalist hatred? The political project, originally far from anyone's interests, turns at some point into a piece of their world, gathering hatred and phobias.
Of course, any armed conflict breaks into the lives of everyone, even those who are distant from the politics. Mutual resentment grows creating insurmountable alienation. Unfortunately, media do take part in it: hot reports, geopolitical analyzes and protection of party and group interests - they add fuel to the fire of man’s tragedy.
Who is to blame? No one is looking for the reasoned response in times of political crisis between Europe and Russia. Russian media is, according to the EU, or how else to explain the unprecedented (in the context of freedom of speech) sanctions against journalists? Even though the freedom of movement of foreign correspondents is not limited in Russia, Europeans are often to blame. Everywhere there are words, accusing the media space in the propaganda of certain political views. We are so used to the environment, where there is mutual accusations, writing it off to the new round of the Cold War, that quite often we do not notice the possibilities of simple human dialogue, including those that are built on professional ethics. And in this context I would like to commend the OSCE assistance, which has supported a joint project of Russian and Ukrainian journalists. It is a non-political cooperation, aimed to create a professional high-quality media products from photos to multimedia and documentaries.
The participants of this project are the young people to whom belongs the European world, and who, in my opinion, must constantly feel the support in building the inter-ethnic dialogue, which is far from propaganda.
What did the first meeting look like? It was opposite to the one of «adults» - experienced journalists. They sat mixed, not paying attention to the etiquette of the bilateral meeting, yawned during the report on the problems of the work of the Austrian commission for the press complaints. All together they supported the idea of creating multimedia stories not about politics, but about the life of Russian and Ukrainian families, divided by the civil war. They did not part during the leisure time: even at night in the pouring rain they went to see the monument to the Soviet soldiers in Vienna.
Working together, the Russian and Ukrainian journalists showed the best human qualities: from the very beginning they were imbued with mutual respect and simply became friends. And if there were disputes sometimes, they did not go beyond the definition of professional criteria. Fascinated by their own work, young people did not think, where the other one comes from, they were interested only in the quality of the final result.
Of course, not everything went easily: during the development of the project there was a constant adjustment of the main subject and creative teams. However, it is important that the meeting took place in Vienna, and the first examples of collaboration demonstrate the great potential for further expansion of joint work. Hopefully, they will take a special place in the global information space as an example of a new type of Russian-Ukrainian relations in the media. The support of young people in development of the web-site where the first projects will be published and all the following reports may be the best proof of our interest in the peace process.
Ashot Dzhazoyan, Chairman of the Mediacongress council "The commonwealth of journalists", Secretary of the Union of Russian journalists:
One of the most important parts of this project is a possibility to broadcast the creative content made by young journalists as a positive example of cooperation between Ukrainian and Russian сolleagues. I am convinced: we managed to achieve a new level of understanding between young Ukrainian and Russian professionals in Vienna. This became possible thanks to collaborative trust. And despite the calumnies about our campaign that were spread by some elders this project will very likely become a reason to rethink the current events. No doubt, further progress on this project will create great opportunities that can influence further development in constructive relations between the media of both countries. It will arise a new model for the future of international journalists' communication built on respect, understanding, desire to listen to each other, and that it why it as important to work with each other today.
Participants of the project:
Darya Vyugina - Moscow, Russia
Igor Efimov - Cherkasy, Ukraine
Kristina Sinichkiv - Nikolaev, Ukraine
Yuri Chmil - Ivano-Frankivsk, Ukraine
Darya Smetanko - was born in Melitopol, studies and works in Odessa, Ukraine
Yaroslavna Chernova - Tyumen, Russia
Sergey Tomilenko - the first secretary of the National Union of Journalists of Ukraine
Ashot Dzhazoyan - secretary of the Union of Russian journalists
Yana Kolomiets - Moscow, Russia
Anna Grigoryeva - Solnechnogorsk, Russia
Kirill Tarasov - Moscow, Russia