Under Secretary for Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights Uzra Zeya and Acting Assistant Secretary for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor Lisa Peterson will visit Tallinn, Estonia, February 9-11 for the third Global Conference for Media Freedom. Co-hosted by the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Estonian Institute of Human Rights, this event is a multilateral, multi-stakeholder forum for strengthening global efforts that defend media freedom and the safety of journalists worldwide.
Under Secretary Zeya’s participation in the main conference panel on the Protection of Journalists reinforces to our international partners that we remain resolute in our position that journalists must be able to do their work free from threats, harassment, violence, and all forms of intimidation.
In the spirit of the Year of Action following President Biden’s first Summit for Democracy, the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs is organizing a pledging session focused on defending media freedom, a key Summit theme. During this session, participants will make statements on their commitments to defend media freedom. Acting Assistant Secretary Peterson will provide opening remarks framing this session. As part of the Year of Action, the U.S. and other governments will turn words into action and discuss progress at the second Summit for Democracy.
Concurrently, the United Kingdom, Canada, and the Netherlands are hosting the second Media Freedom Coalition Ministerial where video remarks from Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken will set the stage for two days of in-person and virtual roundtables, panels, and sessions, with government representatives, journalists, academics, civil society representatives, and other stakeholders. Under Secretary Zeya will lead the U.S. delegation to the Ministerial.
While in Tallinn, Under Secretary Zeya and Acting Assistant Secretary Peterson will engage senior government counterparts and civil society on human rights issues and will emphasize the United States’ firm commitment to press freedom – both online and offline – and advocate for the safety of journalists and media workers worldwide.