3281) Coverage Of Armenian-Turkish Relations & Turkey In Armenian Media In 2006-09

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The research project “Coverage of Armenian-Turkish Relations and Turkey in Armenian Media in 2006-2009” has been realized by Journalists' Team for Sustainable Future NGO with the support of Eurasia Partnership Foundation.

It has been realized in July-October of 2009 with application of two research methods – Content Analysis and Opinion Research –represented in separate parts of this report.

Each part enables to more detailed manner learn about the objectives and tasks of the used methods and the preface reflects a brief information on the process of the realized
. . research.

Worth mentioning, within the scope of Content Analysis overall 1,570 articles from three print and two internet medium directly or indirectly related to the Armenian-Turkish relations or Turkey have been studied and assessed within seven-month period of 2006-2009.

The Content Analysis aimed at revealing the coverage specificity on Armenian-Turkish relations in the Armenian Media during the mentioned four years.

Only articles published in April and September of 2006-2008 and April 2009 have been coded. The choice of the months was conditioned by the activation in the overall reference to Armenian-Turkish relations in April, and the general passivity in September, with an exception of September 2008, connected with Turkish president’s visit to Yerevan by the invitation of Armenian president Serzh Sargsyan.

As far as the monitoring was conducted in July-September of 2009, thus it was impossible to study also articles of September 2009 within the frameworks of this project. Though following Media publications it could be certified that this month was more than active as compared with any of the April months.

Such kind of media activity was conditioned by hot public reaction over the press release issued by the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs of Switzerland, the Ministries of Foreign Affairs of Armenia and Turkey on August 31, 2009, saying that Armenia and Turkey have agreed to start internal political consultations over the two well-known protocols pre-signed during the negotiations mediated by Switzerland.

The Opinion Research has been conducted by means of three focus group discussions. The focus group participants were specialists from Yerevan and Gyumri who have an interest in the issue and have their role in formation of public opinion. The participants were mainly Media sector representatives, political figures, parliamentarians, state officials, as well as historians.

July as an intermediate and a comparatively passive month regarding the discussions on Armenian-Turkish relations was selected for organization of focus group discussions.

The Opinion Research aimed to reveal the participants' opinion on the quality and bias of the coverage on Armenian-Turkish relations in Armenian Media; to define the preposition; possible tendencies in the case of improvement of bilateral relations; necessary steps to improve coverage of bilateral relations.

The research results could be useful for all the stakeholders who are interested in making their investment in the process of improvement of Armenian-Turkish bilateral relations.

Suren Deheryan President of Journalists' Team for Sustainable Future NGO



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