Leaving home

June 6, IMCK started in cooperation with STATT two workshops on writing feature stories on illegal migration. The first workshop is held in Sulaymaniyah. Fifteen journalists attend the workshop. On June 7 the second workshop will take place in the capital of Kurdistan, Erbil.

Many young people in Iraqi Kurdistan want to leave the country. But as visas are hard to come by, many use smugglers and buy passports with a visa. This illegal migration has many bad consequences. Both for the host countries and maybe even more for the illegal migrants. Besides the risk of being detained and deported, people risk to be trafficked for exploitation. Men and women can end up in illegal prostitution or laboured slavery. Therefore IMCK wants to inform Kurdish journalists about the problems.

STATT is involved by providing experts on illegal migration, which provide the background information and expand the knowledge of the participants on the subject. Issues like data on illegal migration from Iraq, the risks of the journey, the consequences of forced return to Iraq, and the opportunities for those who voluntarily return to Iraq were covered.

The second part of the workshop is taught by IMCK-trainer Khaled Suleiman. Co-trainer Goran Lohan, a graduate of the University of Kansas in Journalism, is assisting. The focus is on improving the skills of the participating journalists in writing a feature. They explain the differences between a news story and a feature story for the newspaper or magazine. The main goal of IMCK is to improve the quality of the media in Iraq.

The workshops are part of a bigger project on illegal migration for Kurdish media. The cooperation between IMCK and STATT is the second time this year. Before both organized a photography workshop on illegal migration. Part of the project will be a photo exhibition in June 2012 and a documentary festival (More information is soon to follow).

If you like to see more pictures of the workshop or be informed about other IMCK-workshops, visit our Facebook.


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