Five Afghan and five Pakistani journalists have been selected for the Pak-Afghan Media Exchange Programme, under a media collaboration initiative launched by Pak Institute for Peace Studies (PIPS).
The selected journalists from Pakistan are: Razeshta Sethna (The Herald/ Dawn Media Group), Niaz Ahmad Khan (Mashaal Radio/Swat), Ajmal Bashir (Dunya News), Umer Daraz Nangiana (The Express Tribune) and Abdul Bari (Balochistan Today).
From Afghanistan Noorullah Shayan (Wakht News Agency) Abdul Satar Alokozai (Asia TV Network), Abdul Shafi Azizi (Setara-e-Sahar Radio/TV), Kawoon Khamosh (Tak Weekly) and Sayeed Jamal Zekri (Ariana Afghanistan TV Network) have been selected.
The 10 journalists were selected from a large pool of applicants from the print and electronic media in the two countries by a 14-member Advisory Board that comprised renowned media personalities in Pakistan and Afghanistan. The Advisory Board decided the applications on the basis of the strength of story idea suggested, the experience of the journalist, and media demographics, including language, medium and coverage of the media organisation concerned.
The selected journalists from Afghanistan would visit Pakistan for around a week in late April or early May to complete research for their reports in collaboration with media partners in Pakistan. This would be followed by a week-long visit to Afghanistan by the selected Pakistani journalists.
Applications are now open for the next phase of the Pak-Afghan media exchange programme at http://www.reportap.com/, and the successful applicants are likely to be selected in June.
During the pilot phase in 2011, four journalists—two each from Afghanistan and Pakistan—had conducted joint research under the exchange programme. The two Pakistani journalists in the pilot phase were Waqar Gillani (The News) and Aown Ali (Hum Shehri and Mast FM 103).
The collaborations are taking place under an initiative by Pak Institute for Peace Studies (PIPS) in Pakistan and the Killid Group (TKG) in Afghanistan aimed at improving co-operation between the electronic and print media of the two countries and facilitating for media houses and journalists in Afghanistan and Pakistan access to balanced information, perspective and elaborate analysis about the neighbouring country. International Media Support (IMS) has provided financial support and training expertise for the initiative.