Soutuna is a new project developed and implemented by the Arab Human Rights Academy. It is an internet-based TV station with a focus on empowerment, tolerance and peace – being spearheaded by local Iraqis, we are able to provide video footage, interviews and up-to-date news of issues which affect the most vulnerable in Iraq. By utilizing a local network of activists, volunteers and artists, the Soutuna project will increase the perception of local ownership and control of an important part of Iraq’s political and social structure, therefore increasing the connection to the democratic nature of Iraq’s political system.
The name of the project – Soutuna – meaning Our Voice in Arabic, is intended to embody these principles of tolerance and grassroots democracy. It will be an independent media platform which will serve as a tool for citizen’s political empowerment, a vehicle for the development of a culture of peace, and as a tool to secure social capital and cohesion between different sects, ethnicities and religions.
In addition to this, the project will engage the target population in a programme of ‘tolerance education’, in order to lay the foundation for democratic rights and equality of the people within Iraq. This will also serve to strengthen the position of minorities, disenfranchised peoples, and marginalized groups such as women and the poor.
Participants at Soutuna events and in Soutuna productions
Its primary motives are as follows:
Soutuna has been supported by the National Endowment for Democracy from May 2015, and since that time the channel has grown exponentially. We now have over a quarter of a million views and have seen our videos going viral on the internet, reaching audiences around the globe.
Please do view the channel at www.soutuna.com and follow us at @soutuna. We are always looking for new supporters – please do get in contact if you can help our mission in any way.
For more information, please download our latest brochure here.