On September 22, 2015 the seminar “Formation of Positive Attitude Towards Refugees and Coverage of This Topic in Mass Media” for the students of the Institute of Journalism of BSU took place on the base of the corresponding Institute. The event was organized jointly by the International Non-governmental Association for Scientific Research, Information and Educational Programmes “Evolutio” and the Institute of Journalism of BSU with the support of the UNHCR Representation in the Republic of Belarus. Maryna Melnik, UNHCR Programme Associate, Liubou Kravets, Public Information Assistant of the INA “Evolutio”, and Ilya Okynev, Chief of the Legal Department of the Refugee Counseling Service of Belarusian Movement of Medical Workers, took part in the event.
Anna Basova, Dean of the Faculty of Advanced Training and Retraining of the Institute of Journalism of BSU, PhD in Philology, Associate Professor, gave an introductory speech at the seminar. She noted that current geopolitical situation in the world dictates the necessity of more detailed consideration of the topics of refugees, forced migration and statelessness.
Maryna Melnik delivered her presentation where she told about UNCHR activities in the world and in the Republic of Belarus, got the guests acquainted with different categories of persons under UNHCR mandate and gave a statistics. She also focused on the situation with Ukrainian forced migrants and kindly answered to questions of the auditory.
Ilya Okynev focused on the activities of the presented organization, gave examples of cases which he face in the course on his work. Answering to the question on how persons forced to flee their homes may receive refugee status and what is the refugee status determination procedure, he noted that there is a range of connected with each other organizations starting with the Ministry of Internal and ending up with the Refugee Counseling Service, which are always ready to provide assistance and consult the applying persons.
Liubov Kravets presented the information titled “Formation of Positive Attitude Towards Refugees and Coverage of This Topic in Mass Media”. She focused on determining such terms as “forced migration”, “voluntary migration”, “refugees”, “ecological migrant”, etc. Distinguishing these definitions Liubov Kravets noted the necessity for journalists to understand them today, especially while presenting interview with refugees.
The audience embraced the speeches with interest. Following the presentations vivid discussion on the interesting for the audience topics took place.