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Minister Fajon at the Summit for Democracy thematic event: 'Disinformation is a Direct Attack on Democracy'

At the invitation of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, Wopke Hoekstra, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs Tanja Fajon took part in an online “talk show” event "Media Freedom as a Cornerstone of Democracy". Held in the framework of the second Summit for Democracy, the event started yesterday and featured a video message by the President of the Republic of Slovenia, Nataša Pirc Musar.
Minister Fajon taking part in the Summit for Democracy thematic event 'Disinformation is a Direct Attack on Democracy'

Minister Fajon taking part in the Summit for Democracy thematic event 'Disinformation is a Direct Attack on Democracy' | Author Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs

Minister Fajon discussed the protection of journalists, freedom of expression online and bolstering free, diverse and independent media with Kosovo's Foreign Minister Donika Gërvalla-Schwarz and USAID Administrator Samantha Power.

In a discussion moderated by former journalist and BBC World News presenter Nisha Pillai, Minister Fajon highlighted the negative effects of disinformation on democratic processes. "Disinformation is not new, but the speed at which it spreads and its impact on democratic processes is worrying. This is why we, political office holders, need to set an example when shaping our messages for citizens," said Ms Fajon, explaining that as a rule, readers of fake news tend to be more active voters, which shows a potential direct influence of disinformation on political processes and elections.

"It is the task of national media to ensure the professionalism of journalists, news based on facts and to ensure that these facts are verified. Citizens need to be made aware and educated about the potential negative impact of disinformation and encouraged to think critically about the sources and content of the information on which they base their views," said Ms Fajon.

The Summit for Democracy also adopted for the first time a declaration (, in which leaders reaffirmed that democracy is humanity’s most enduring means to advance peace, prosperity, equality, sustainable development, and security. By supporting the Declaration, Slovenia has also pledged to uphold and defend the values of freedom and democracy. One of the objectives of the Summit for Democracy is to show the progress in implementing the commitments announced by countries since the first Summit for Democracy, as well as to announce new ones, as Slovenia has done.