Vienna / Budapest, 1 December 2010 – The WAZ Media Group, Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation (KAS) and the South and East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO), in cooperation with the Central European Initiative (CEI) and Access Info and together with local partners Pannon Lapok Tarsasaga, HVG, the Network for Reporting on Eastern Europe (N-Ost), Raiffeisen Bank International AG (RBI) and Fuggetlen Mediakozpont (Center for Independent Journalism) are pleased to announce the IV South East Europe Media Forum (SEE Media Forum), which will bring together media CEOs, editors-in-chief, leading investigative journalists, business professionals, governmental representatives, CEOs from companies active in South East and Central Europe and representatives of NGOs. The IV SEE Media Forum, centered around the topic “Access to Information – Sources for Investigative Journalists”, is scheduled to take place from 2 – 3 December 2010 in Budapest, Hungary. László Kövér, Speaker of the National Assembly of Hungary will open the Forum.

Welcome speeches will be given by Srgjan Kerim, President of the 62nd Session of the United Nations General Assembly and special envoy for political affairs of the WAZ Media Group, Frank Spengler, Deputy Head of the European and International Cooperation Department of the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS), Gerhard Pfanzelter, Secretary General of Central European Initiative (CEI), and Oliver Vujovic, Secretary General of the South and East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO).

After the opening, a roundtable between journalists and experts on the hot media topic of WikiLeaks will be held.

Other panels at this year’s SEE Media Forum are: “Tools for Investigative Journalism”; “Media NGOs and Access To Information”; “Access to Information – Regional Experience”; “Access To Information – International Experience”; “Transparency of Media Ownership and Public Information”; and “Coming To Terms with The Past – Accessibility of Secret Archives”.

More than 250 media professionals are expected to take part. A welcome reception will be organised in cooperation with Raiffeisen Bank International AG (RBI). During the SEE Media Forum the annual CEI SEEMO Award for Outstanding Merits in Investigative Journalism as well as the annual WAZ-IFJ (International Federation of Journalists) Courage Award will be presented and awarded to outstanding investigative journalists.

The WAZ Media Group and the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) will present the team of Hungarian authors Jozsef Gelei (50) and Laszlo Muranyi (54) with the “WAZ-IFJ Prize for Courage in Journalism 2010”. The sponsors will award Croatian journalist Hrvoje Slabek (38) a second-place distinction. The jury has decided to split the prize, which is being announced for the second time.

The Central European Initiative (CEI) and the South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO) will present to Adrian Mogos from Romania the CEI SEEMO Award for Outstanding Merits in Investigative Journalism 2010, along with a ‘special mention’ for Iryna Khalip from Belarus and Lydia Pavlova from Bulgaria for their valuable contribution to investigative journalism in their countries.

In addition to the working sessions, the two-day forum offers a unique opportunity to meet leading professionals for an open discussion about media, investigative journalism and access to information in South East and Central Europe.

The South East Europe Media Forum (SEEMF) is a joint project by the WAZ Media Group, Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation (KAS) and the South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO). The first SEEMF was held in 2007 in Zagreb, Croatia; more than 150 participants took part. The second SEEMF was held in Sofia, Bulgaria, in 2008, with more than 250 participants. The third SEEMF was held in 2009 in Tirana, Albania; about 300 participants attended.

Registration for the event remains open. For further information and registration forms for the SEE Media Forum, please contact Ms. Krasimira Plachetzky at the SEEMO office in Vienna (E-mail: krasi@seemo.org ) or Mr. Sandor Orban in Budapest (E-mail: SEEMF2010Budapest@cij.hu )