For Immediate Release: March 8, 2005
Contact: Katie Rudolph, krudolph[at]presspartners[dot]org


Alfred Friendly Press Fellowships Names 21st Class of Fellows


Washington, DC —Eight journalists from countries ranging from Pakistan, Yemen, Tanzania and Uruguay to India, Cambodia, South Africa, and China will be headed to the United States on March 19 for nearly six months of training in American news organizations. Among them are two journalists chosen for a fellowship that honors the life and work of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl, and a journalist chosen for a specialized fellowship in investigative reporting.

These outstanding journalists are the 21st class in the Alfred Friendly Press Fellowships (AFPF) program, a unique training experience that allows young print journalists to participate first-hand in America’s Constitutionally protected news-gathering and news-writing processes. Like their 224 predecessors, these journalists will learn about press freedom and responsibility by reporting and writing stories at their host publications. And, like previous AFPF participants, they will take home new understanding of the skills and ethics that are the foundation of American journalism.

This year, AFPF is pleased to announce a new specialized fellowship in investigative reporting, hosted by the Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE) in Columbia, Missouri. In addition to writing for IRE publications, this Fellow will also study the effective usage of Freedom of Information Acts in the United States and around the world at the Freedom of Information Center at the Missouri School of Journalism.

The Daniel Pearl Fellowships, which are offered to journalists from Muslim countries, will be hosted this year by the Washington, DC bureau of The Wall Street Journal and theLos Angeles Times. These special fellowships, underwritten by the Daniel Pearl Foundation, honor the Journal reporter who was kidnapped and murdered in Pakistan in 2002.

The Alfred Friendly Press Fellowships program is based on the idea that visiting journalists can best learn about the role and function of a free press through professional-level work experience in America’s best news organizations. AFPF places each Fellow at a single journalistic organization for a six-month working fellowship. Upon returning to their home countries, participants apply what they have learned to the operations of their own newsrooms. This program benefits both the Fellows and the hosts by increasing their understanding of a free press, other countries, and cultures. The experience and training have had a profound impact on our Fellows’ professional lives, the publications for which they work and their readers.

At the heart of the fellowship program is the commitment of the journalistic organizations that host the Fellows. With the support of the hosts, Fellows learn first-hand the practical realities of journalism in this country and the role it plays in our society. The hosts expose these Fellows to new journalistic ideas, sharing the American journalistic values and standards and making a difference in the quality and openness of journalism around the world.

The 2005 Friendly Fellows, their home publications, home countries, and host publications are:

Mr. Walid Al-Saqaf, Yemen Times, Yemen, The Wall Street Journal – DC bureau (Daniel Pearl Fellow)
Ms. Ammara Durrani, The News International, Pakistan, Los Angeles Times (Daniel Pearl Fellow)
Ms. Malini Goyal, India Today, India, Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Mr. Pablo Izmirlian, El Observador, Uruguay, The Washington Post
Mr. Thabo Mkhize, Sunday Times, South Africa, St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Mr. Kejin Qian, Yangcheng Evening News, China, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Mr. Pricel Seleman, The African, Tanzania, Investigative Reporters and Editors (Columbia, MO)
Mr. Samean Yun, The Cambodia Daily, Cambodia, Denver Rocky Mountain News


Alfred Friendly Press Partners Mission:  In the belief that just societies must have a vigorous and principled free press, Alfred Friendly Press Partners aims to build strong newsrooms that make possible an informed citizenry. We work to strengthen skills and values by placing talented international journalists in U.S. newsrooms and by establishing long-term training partnerships with news organizations that share our goal of fostering professional excellence.