Jonathan Fryer

Writer, Lecturer, Broadcaster and Liberal Democrat Politician

Archive for January 10th, 2008

The Association of European Journalists

Posted by jonathanfryer on Thursday, 10th January, 2008

The UK Section of the Association of European Journalists (AEJ) held its AGM at the London offices of the European Parliament this evening, followed by finger food and drinks at a nearby hostelry. I first joined the AEJ (Belgian Section) way back in 1974, when I was in Brussels for Reuters, and have long savoured it as a forum not just for conviviality amongst hacks. but also for serious discussion of European isssues. The UK Section has regular lunchtime briefings, not only with UK politicians and senior European officials, but sometimes Ambassadors from non-member states (two of the most memorable recently being from Turkey and Brazil).

The AEJ UK Section is chaired by the BBC’s former European correspondent William Horsley, who was at Oxford doing Oriental Studies (him Japanese, me Chinese) at the same time as me; our paths later crossed at the BBC. It’s a small world, as they say. William recently put together a compendium of essays on media freedom from 20 of the 27 EU member states, which was launched to great acclaim at the last international AEJ congress in Dublin, in November. The Irish have, of course, always taken the EU far more seriously than the UK — and have benefitted considerably economically from doing so.


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