PACIFIC ISLANDER RATULELE WINS INTERNATIONAL GREEN PEN AWARD

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SUVA, Fiji Islands (September 14, 1999 – Islands Business International/PINA Nius Online)---Nina Ratulele of the Pacific Islands News Association (PINA) today received the 1999 International Green Pen Award at ceremonies in Comilla, Bangladesh.

She was one of three awardees honored at a joint congress of the Asia-Pacific Forum of Environmental Journalists (AFEJ) and the Commonwealth Environmental Journalists Association (CEJA).

Quamrul Islam Chowdhury of Bangladesh, the chairperson of the joint congress, said the award goes to those who play an eminent role in developing environmental journalism.

Ms. Ratulele was recognized because of her efforts to "upscale the quality of environmental journalism in the Pacific Islands." This included her continuing and dedicated work to promote and develop Pacific Islands environmental journalism training and freedom of information, Mr. Chowdhury said.

Also awarded the International Green Pen in Comilla were two distinguished Asian environmental journalists:

* Dr. Dharman Wickremaratne, of Sri Lanka; and

* Zaigham Khan, of Pakistan.

Ms. Ratulele, from the Fiji Islands, is the administrator of PINA; coordinator of the PINA Pacific Freedom of Information Network; founder and secretary of the PINA Pacific Forum of Environmental Journalists; and convener (chair) of the council of IFEX, the global network of freedom of expression and media freedom groups.

The Comilla Congress is hosted and organized by the Forum of Environmental Journalists of Bangladesh. Its theme is "Water and the Environment: The Role of the Media." Participants are hearing leading speakers on this topic and taking part in workshops, working groups and tours.

The congress also includes the presentation of the Asia-Pacific environmental journalism awards and the general assemblies of AFEJ and CEJA.

For additional information, contact: Peter Lomas

Islands Business International Ph: +679 303108 Fax: +679 301423

Web: http://www.islandsbusiness.com

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