09 March 2015


WHEREAS our Host Committee, consisting of newspapers La Prensa, La Estrella, El  Siglo, Metro Libre, Mundo Social and Capital Financiero, as well as Editorial Panamá América S.A. (EPASA) and TVN Media, exhibited before and after the midyear meeting, a high spirit  cordiality, support and solidarity which elevated the meeting; WHEREAS the meeting also received the generous backing of the following organizations and companies: the Panama Canal Authority, Copa Airlines, Kyocera, Panama Tourism Authority, Ultracom, Samsung Galaxy, Gas Natural Fenosa, Cable & Wireless Panamá, Cemex and El Venezolano; WHEREAS the first seminar organized by the IAPA’s Press Institute for the midyear meeting titled “Paywalls and other strategies for the monetization of digital content” took place on Friday morning with a panel constituted by David Ho, mobile platform editor of The Wall Street Journal, New York, New York and Fernando Gómez of Protecmedia, Madrid, Spain, and the President of the Press Institute, Matthew Sanders, director of Deseret Digital Media, Salt Lake City, Utah provided an explanatory introduction to the subject, which was moderated by Fabricio Altamirano, director ofEl Diario de Hoy, San Salvador, El Salvador; WHEREAS during the second seminar “Work Flows and Times in Multimedia” the issue of the allocation of content across multiple platforms was addressed knowledgeably and in great detail by Iñaki Palacios, director of Cases i Associats, Miami, Florida and Jorge Heili, Dos al Cubo, Buenos Aires, Argentina and was moderated by Patricia Pineda, Panorama, Caracas, Venezuela; WHEREAS on Friday afternoon, Mary L. Van Meter and Tara McMeekin, editors of the technical group and news technology magazine, NewsTech, of Denver, Colorado, provided a useful guide to those present on how to manage investment within their businesses in a time of great technological change; WHEREAS during the last seminar on the afternoon of the first day of the midyear meeting, David Ho of The Wall Street Journal, New York, New York and David Segura, of Wouzee, Madrid, Spain, spoke about how mobile content and live video technologies have the potential to multiply media audiences, which was moderated by Isabel Amorín Sicherle of El País, Madrid, Spain; WHEREAS on Friday night, the Tourism Authority of Panama offered a reception in the Panama Hilton Hotel pool area to welcome all IAPA midyear meeting participants providing local color with the presentation of a Panamanian folkloric dance group; WHEREAS the President of the Committee on Freedom of the Press and Information, Claudio Paolillo of Búsqueda, Montevideo, Uruguay, led the presentation of reports on the state of press freedom in the majority of the hemisphere’s countries, and later, a panel titled “Government Control Through the Internet” in which the authorized opinions of Jane Kirtley, a Minnesota University professor and of Joel Simon, Executive Director of the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), New York, New York, were presented, with Claudio Paolillo acting as session moderator; WHEREAS the official opening of the IAPA’s midyear meeting was honored with the presence of the President of the Republic of Panama, Juan Carlos Varela, who addressed the IAPA directors with words of praise and support IAPA in a defintive defense of the freedom of expression; the President was introduced by the director of Panama’s La Prensa, Lourdes de Obaldía; and at the beginning of the opening ceremony, the President of IAPA, Gustavo Mohme of La República, Lima, Peru presented his biannual report to a packed room, which was widely covered by the Panamanian and international press; WHEREAS Cuban writer and journalist, Yoani Sánchez, author of the digital newspaper 14yMedio in Cubaand current Vice President of the IAPA’s Committee on Freedom of the Press and Information for Cuba again honored the IAPA’s meetings with her presence and also presented a useful report on the current situation in Cuba, giving rise to expressions of admiration, solidarity and sympathy among participants; WHEREAS during Saturday’s lunch, the OAS former Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression, Catalina Botero, received the Chapultepec Prize in a ceremony in which she was introduced by the IAPA President Gustavo Mohme and the President of the Chapultepec Committe, José Roberto Dutriz of La Prensa Gráfica, San Salvador, El Salvador; during the same lunch, the newspaper La Prensa of Panama celebrated its 35th anniversary and also presented Catalina Botero with a painting; WHEREAS on Saturday afternoon,  the regional Vice Presidents of the Committee on Freedom of the Press and Expression for  Argentina, Daniel Dessein of La Gazeta de Tucumán, Argentina; for Bolivia, Pedro Rivero of  El Deber, Santacruz de la Sierra, Bolivia; for Uruguay, Washington Beltrán of El País, Montevideo, Uruguay; and for Venezuela, Asdrúbal Aguiar of El Impulso, Barquisimeto, Venezuela; and from Ecuador, Diego Cornejo, of the Ecuadorean Newspaper Editors Association and Pedro Valverde of El Universo, Guayaquil, Ecuador; constituted an informative round table titled “Legal Restrictions” and that attorney Adrián Ventura of La Nación, Buenos Aires, Argentina, acted as moderator; WHEREAS on Saturday evening, the Panama Canal Authority, coinciding with the celebration of the first centenary of this important inter-oceanic route, offered participants of the IAPA midyear meeting a reception and dinner at the Miraflores Locks and the Administrator of the Canal, Jorge Quijano, honored those present with a special presentation; WHEREAS during Sunday’s first session, organized in recognition of Nobel Prize for Literature winner, Gabriel García Márquez of Colombia’s marked preference for journalism; it was hosted by a panel composed of dignitaries who knew the novelist intimately: Enrique Santos, former IAPA President of Bogota, Colombia; Darío Arismendi of Radio Caracol, Bogota, Colombia, and Jorge Eduardo Ritter, former Foreign Minister of Panama; and the General Director of the Gabriel García Márquez Ibero-American New Journalism Foundation, Jaime Abello Banfi, in his role as presenter, led a session which was well-received by all those in attendance; WHEREAS during Sunday’s second session, titled “Institutional Weakness”: an Impediment for Latin America” the IAPA was honored to present former Justice of the International Criminal Court, Luis Moreno Ocampo of Buenos Aires, Argentina and OAS Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression, Edison Lanza, during an intense session which, directed by moderator, Danilo Arbilla, former IAPA President, Montevideo, Uruguay, led to a spirited democratic debate; WHEREAS during Sunday’s third session, Yoani Sánchez of 14yMedio, La Habana, Cuba; Roberto Pombo of El Tiempo, Bogota, Colombia; Miguel Henrique Otero of El Nacional, Caracas, Venezuela; Enrique Santos, former IAPA President of Bogota, Colombia; Marcel Granier of RCTV, Caracas, Venezuela and, acting as moderator, Eduardo Quirós of El Siglo and La Estrella, Panama, spoke very interestingly and knowledgeably about the geopolitical impact within the region of the surprising agreement reached with the intention to normalize relations between Cuba and the United States; WHEREAS Claudia Gurisatti abd Johnattan Bilanceri, of Channel NTN24, Bogota, Colombia, gave a moving presentation, before lunch was served, on how the media has been able to evade censorship and the brutal repression meted out by the Venezuelan regime against popular protests, using social media and other digital tools; and the lunch was sponsored by Unión Fenosa Gas Natural; WHEREAS the Panama Canal Museum opened its doors to IAPA delegates on Sunday evening for an elegant reception hosted by CEMEX promoting a spirit of camaraderie and cordiality among the meeting’s participants; WHEREAS during the Closing Lunch, the IAPA President, Gustavo Mohme of La República, Lima, Peru presented a view of the expectations and challenges facing IAPA in the future and before this, the participants heard a presentation given by Agustín de la Guardia, General Manager of Cable & Wireless Panama, a sponsor of this event WHEREAS the Panamanian media provided information in-depth abouth the IAPA mid year meeting that for the first time became a trending topic on Twitter in Panama THE MIDYEAR MEETING OF THE IAPA RESOLVES to express on behalf of the  president, his officers, directors and members, his deepest gratitude and appreciation to the people and enterprises that contributed to and supported this Midyear Meeting in 2015 held in Panama City, Republic of Panama.