03_Journalists and migrations
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NET one
Media and United World
movimento dei focolari

"Journalists and migrations" An international project (2016-2017)
NET one - Media and United World
movimento dei focolari

Athens, April 9,
Jesuit Kentro Arrupe,
Smyrnis street - 10439 Athens


January in Budapest (Hungary)
April in Athens (Greece)
June in Lublin (Poland)
June in Man (Ivory Coast)
September in Brussels (Belgium)
November in Beirut (Lebanon)

European journalists and other mass media representatives are following the
recent wave of immigration with great interest. This situation is giving rise to important and precise questions about the way in
which news and information representatives are covering these events. And,
therefore, a necessity is emerging for a discussion among European journalists,
with the help of experts, in order to understand the social and political
phenomena tied to immigration.

In 2015 immigration from the southern Mediterranean and the Middle East
countries noticeably hit much of Europe, after several years in which the usual
arrival countries (Greece and Italy, in particular) were left without the needed
European support. The international media, and European in particular, after
having followed the arrivals for many years without giving due importance to the
phenomenon, have now begun to do so. The immigration phenomenon indeed
involves all European countries and their peoples. This is revealed both by the
growth of welcome initiatives by civil society and governments on the one hand,
and by xenophobic and anti-European movements or Euroscepticism on the

Journalists often have followed these events with great means, deep interest and
undeniable capability. Numerous questions are emerging, nevertheless, about
the pattern of journalists’ interests, who are often only in search of getting the
scoop, reporting in scandalous tones, and spreading fear, also because the live
coverage and reports appear quite different from one European country to
another mainly because of different immigration policies pursued by individual

Via Piave 15, 306 - 00046 - Grottaferrata (Roma) - tel. 06-945407212 - fax. 06-9412080 – e-mail:netone@net-one.org
movimento dei focolari
- media and a united world
• •
While some countries are more “welcoming,” others have erected barriers to
curb the wave of immigration. This latter has had limited results, however, as the
pressure of the wave is so strong, and new transit entries for immigrants are
discovered every day.
The hesitancy of European institutions had led governments to act individually
instead of together, with some erecting walls, and some setting quotas or closing
borders. The Schengen Treaty is on the brink of failure. Following the Hungarian
resistance which also involved other countries such as Poland, the Czech
Republic, and Slovakia, after the barriers erected in the Balkans, after
negotiations with Turkey, and after the closure of all crossings to the North,
Greece, with its devastating economic crisis and hundreds of thousands of
refugees only a few miles away from its shores, is, unfortunately, at the center of
the international political chessboard.
NetOne, an association of professionals, academics, and communications
students inspired by the Focolare, in collaboration with various European and
worldwide editions of the Città Nuova magazine, feels particularly involved in
the immigration issue. We are, therefore, organizing mini-symposia in different countries to aid in deepening the relationship between journalists and
immigration. In January in Budapest, April 9 in Athens, June in Poland and
then in the Ivory Coast, in September in Brussels, and in November in Lebanon.
What do we want to do? We want to bring together multinational journalists,
politicians, NGOs, and members of various Churches in order to try to
understand how the media should confront the phenomenon of immigration. As
an example, German, Italian, Hungarian, and Slovenian journalists met in
Hungary earlier this year in order to better understand each other after the
recent difficult months. This effort was rewarded with a mutual understanding,
resulting in professional commitments and editorial products inspired by a less
narrow vision of events and a more open perspective. NetOne believes it is now
particularly important to have a meeting in Athens since we, as Europeans, are
focusing on what is happening at present at the border with Fyrom.
Pál Tóth (Budapest)- toth.pal@gmail.com
Michele Zanzucchi (Rome) - mzanzucchi@cittanuova.it
Predy Pizzo (Athens): predypizzo@alice.it
Via Piave 15, 306 - 00046 - Grottaferrata (Roma) - tel. 06-945407212 - fax. 06-9412080 – e-mail:netone@net-one.org
movimento dei focolari
- media and a united world

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