Nobel Peace Laureate to address human rights forum

Nobel Peace Prize winner Maria Ressa
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Nobel Peace Prize winner Maria Ressa

Highlights

Nobel Peace Prize winner Maria Ressa and Zahra Joya, an Afghan reporter who fled the Taliban, will join a distinguished line-up of speakers that also includes world-renowned Professor of Economics Jeffrey Sachs, Executive Director of Aspen Digital Vivian Schiller and founder of craigslist, philanthropist Craig Newmark at the Thomson Reuters Foundation's flagship annual forum Trust Conference on November 17-18.

London: Nobel Peace Prize winner Maria Ressa and Zahra Joya, an Afghan reporter who fled the Taliban, will join a distinguished line-up of speakers that also includes world-renowned Professor of Economics Jeffrey Sachs, Executive Director of Aspen Digital Vivian Schiller and founder of craigslist, philanthropist Craig Newmark at the Thomson Reuters Foundation's flagship annual forum Trust Conference on November 17-18.

They will join human rights defenders, innovators, media experts, policymakers and business leaders at the online forum, which brings together thousands of delegates from around the world.

The event comes at a critical juncture of the Covid-19 crisis and the UN climate summit, and will address how the pandemic has deepened longstanding social and economic inequalities, has revitalised the drive for a sustainable future and has triggered an alarming spike in media freedom and human rights violations.

With 18 hours of live-streamed talks, plenaries and insight sessions, leading experts from a variety of disciplines will share new insights on shifting the post-pandemic economy onto a more inclusive and sustainable path, one built on the principles of human rights, media freedom and climate justice.

They will weigh in on cutting-edge solutions to tackle the world's most consequential challenges, including the business case for economic inclusion, the path to zero emissions, the human cost of internet shutdowns and a legal network for journalists at risk.

This year's diverse speakers are at the forefront of their respective fields, and also include Dr Hilda C. Heine, Senator and former President of the Marshall Islands; Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr OBE, Mayor of Sierra Leone's capital, Freetown; Zahra Joya, Journalist and founder of Rukhshana Media in Afghanistan; Javier Pallero, Policy Director at Access Now; Shamina Singh, Executive VP for Sustainability at Mastercard; Jorge Rubio Nava, Global Head of Social Finance at Citi; Danielle Belton, Editor-in-Chief of the Huffington Post; Lina Attalah, Co-founder of independent Egyptian news outlet Mada Masr; Alessandra Galloni, Editor-in-Chief of Reuters; Kanbar Hossein Bor, UK Coordinator Media Freedom Campaign & Deputy Director Democratic Governance, FCDO; Ma Jun, Founding Director of the Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs and Caoilfhionn Gallagher QC, Barrister at Doughty Street Chambers, specialising in human rights and civil liberties.

"The converging economic, health and climate crises are putting our democracies, people and planet under an existential threat," said Thomson Reuters Foundation CEO Antonio Zappulla.

"But there is also a great opportunity for a coordinated global response -- the success of which depends on how well we work with and learn from each other.

In response to the ongoing, drastic deterioration of media freedoms, the Foundation will also be launching a new Legal Network for Journalists at Risk (LNJAR) at Trust Conference, an initiative in partnership with the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) and Media Defence.

The LNJAR comprises 15 organisations, and strategically coordinates different types of legal support to enable journalists and independent media outlets to continue to cover public interest stories and hold power to account without fear of retribution.

Additionally, the Foundation will unveil its partnership with UNESCO, the International Women's Media Foundation and the International News Safety Institute (INSI) through which it has developed practical and legal tools for journalists, media managers and newsrooms to counter harassment.

Now in its ninth year, Trust Conference reflects the Thomson Reuters Foundationa¿s work in tackling the world's most complex societal issues, with a focus on socio-economic inclusion, sustainability, media freedom and human rights.

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