KirkukNow editor-in-chief contributed to handbook

Toolkit for civil society organizations and activists to counter hate speech

Publishing “Kaka’is in the Time of Corona,” booklet in Rizgari compound in Daquq, southwest of Kirkuk. Soran Mohammed

By KirkukNow

The Minority Rights Group International MRG, together with partners from Iraq, including KirkukNow media outlet, Myanmar and Pakistan under the Coalition for Religious Equality and Inclusive Development (CREID) have launched a toolkit for civil society organizations and activists to counter hate speech.

“The Hate Speech Crisis: Ways to start fixing it” released on May 20,22, is designed to be practical and useful to minority, inter-cultural, faith and human rights organizations at the local level. It explains not what could be done, but how MRG partners designed and carried out innovative projects to tackle hate speech and what they learnt by doing so.

“The world is seeing an explosion of hate speech. One analysis records a 400-fold increase in the use of hate terms online in Pakistan between 2011 and 2021. Minorities often bear the brunt of hate speech and can feel powerless to do anything about it,” the toolkit finds out.

The world is seeing an explosion of hate speech. One analysis records a 400-fold increase in the use of hate terms online in Pakistan between 2011 and 2021

This toolkit distils the experience gained by a dozen partners working in Iraq, Myanmar and Pakistan with MRG as part of the CREID consortium programme over the last five years.

The MRG is a non- governmental organization (NGO) working to secure the rights of ethnic, religious and linguistic minorities and indigenous peoples worldwide, and to promote cooperation and understanding between communities.

Its activities are focused on international advocacy, training, publishing and outreach. MRG is guided by the needs expressed by our worldwide partner network of organizations, which represent minorities and indigenous peoples.

The counter hate speech toolkit covers how to create a lexicon of hate speech terms, how to monitor levels, types, triggers and targets of hate speech, how and where to report egregious hate speech and how to work with young people or the media to generate positive speech to counter online and offline hate.

MRG gratefully acknowledges the support of all organizations and individuals who contributed to this publication, including Salam Omer, editor-in-chief of KirkukNow.

KirkukNow is an independent electronic website launched in April 2011, publishes stories and events taking place within or relevant to Iraq’s disputed territories, Iraq in the three main languages of these areas - Arabic, Kurdish and Turkmen- as well as in English with the aim of promoting peaceful coexistence among religious and ethnic minorities in those areas and providing easy access to information.

In February 2021, KirkukNow media outlet proudly publishes its first printed booklet titled "Kaka'is in the Time of Corona," funded by CREID.

The booklet is composed of two sections, one in Arabic and one in English, which contain twenty-four authentic journalistic pieces produced by the team of journalists at KirkukNow.

(CREID) is convened by the Institute of Development Studies and was launched in 2018. Current strategic partners include: the Al-Khoei Foundation, Minority Rights Group and Refcemi. (CREID) also works with partners around the world, particularly in countries of focus (Egypt, India, Iraq, Nigeria and Pakistan).

CREID is providing research evidence and delivering practical programmes to redress the impact of discrimination on the grounds of religion or belief, by tackling poverty and exclusion and promoting collaboration and empowerment.

In the final episode of a series of podcasts produced by CREID on identifying and countering hate speech, Salam Omer, was hosted to discuss the importance of creating a counter narrative for example, through a trusted and neutral news platform, available in local languages, giving voice and sharing positive stories about minority groups (KirkukNow); building awareness of hate speech and creating positive narratives working with young people.

This podcast was originally recorded in March 2021 and launched last September at "#Incite! Identifying and challenging online hate speech."


To dowbload the toolkit, please click below: 

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