The International Press Institute (IPI) and the Centre for Defending the Freedom of Journalists (CDFJ) on Monday signed a Memorandum of Understanding to hold the institute’s 62nd Congress in Amman during 18-21 May 2013. The IPI World Congress will also coincide with the 2nd CDFJ Media Freedom Defenders in the Arab World regional conference which will be held over the two days preceding the World Congress. Executive Director of the IPI Alison McKenzie said the institute chose the CDFJ as a partner to hold the conference as it proved its capability of defending press freedoms. She said the event will provide an opportunity to enhance media freedoms in the Kingdom. “The Arab Spring brought with it many hopes and aspirations, in particular among the millions of young people who so effectively used social media to communicate and raise awareness during the uprisings,” Bethel McKenzie said. “However, as the optimism of the Arab Spring gives way to anxieties about where these changes are taking them, there remain very real press freedom concerns in the region, and we hope to draw attention to these issues during our congress.” President of the CDFJ Nidal Mansour highlighted the importance of partnership with the IPI. He said holding the 62nd IPI Congress in conjunction with CDFJ’s 2nd Forum for Media Freedom Defenders in the Arab World will be a significant milestone in defending and supporting media freedoms in the Arab world and will reduce violations against journalists in the region.” He added that the congress will allow the global media community to examine closely the Jordanian media experience with its weaknesses and strengths. “This may assist in addressing the complicated questions raised regarding media freedom, especially online media, after the latest developments in technology and communication tools”, he added. Titled “Documenting Change / Empowering Media”, the two-day congress will examine the many challenges, concerns and opportunities facing journalists in a rapidly changing media landscape – not only in the Arab world, but around the globe. Panels will focus on fostering free speech in the Arab world, reporting on religion, the role of women in the media, criminal defamation, promoting and protecting the safety of journalists, and Internet regulation, among other issues.