BIRN Marks International Fact-Checking Day With Debate

To mark Fact-Checking Day in Kosovo, and how to combat disinformation, BIRN and its partners are holding a conference bringing together journalists, media professionals, regulators, self-regulators and experts.

Media experts will gather online and physically in Kosovo on April 4 at 2pm to discuss the path to informational truth through fact-checking.

The conference and webinar is being organized by BIRN Kosovo in partnership with Internews Kosovo and FindBug.

The general topic of discussion will be, “Dealing with Facts: How to Resist Harmful External Influences”.

Three organized panels will discuss the risks of harmful foreign influences, especially those coming from powerful hostile countries such as China and Russia. The growing need for strong and sound verification of facts will also be discussed.

International Fact-Checking Day has been celebrated around the world since April 2, 2017.

Under the leadership of Poynter’s International Fact-Checking Network IFCN, it is marked by various media organizations around the world as the day when factual accuracy and truth is celebrated and discussed.

The day is intentionally set one day after Fools Day, or Lie Day, April 1. International Day of Verification of Facts highlights the binary aspect of “lie against fact” and that facts are now more important than ever.

BIRN Kosovo and Internews Kosovo have their own fact-checking tool, Krypometer, which has served as the primary fact-checking tool in Kosovo since 2015, and became part of the IFCN network in December 2016.

Conference will be divided into three sessions or panels:

PANEL 1: How to combat harmful external influences – lessons from the world

Moderator: Jeta Xharra, Executive Director of BIRN

Xharra is director and founder of BIRN Kosova, as well as moderator and editor of the TV show KALLXOPërnime  which is broadcast on TV Dukagjini. Xharra founded the show Life in Kosovo, which dealt with various taboo and research topics, and was broadcast on RTK for about 15 years.


Enock Nyariki, Community Engagement and Impact Manager, IFCN

As an engagement and impact manager at the International Fact-Checking Network, IFCN, Nyariki works to empower fact-checkers around the world. Previously, he was managing editor of PesaCheck, where he led the disinformation expedition team in 13 African countries, to combat harmful information in some of the harshest media environments in the world.

Jasna Jelisić, Head of the Western Balkans Task Force in the EEAS Division for Strategic Communication and Information Analysis

Jelisić is the head of the Task Force for the Western Balkans in the Strategic Communication Division of the European External Action Service. Working for the EU since 2006, she has had a wide range of responsibilities dealing with numerous complex issues related to the implementation of EU policies in the Western Balkans. During 2015-16, she contributed to the development of the EU Global Strategy, arguing for the positioning of public diplomacy as one of the main pillars of EU external action.

Rainer Schüller, ‘Der Standard’, Austria

Deputy editor-in-chief of Der Standard newspaper since 2013, he joined in 2000 and has since been involved in the development of the newspaper’s online edition. Initially as policy editor and later as head of the internal policy department and managing editor, Schüller is now in charge of the editorial board integrated into Der Standard. He works also as an external lecturer at the Institute for Media and Communication Studies at the University of Vienna.

 Ed Vulliamy, ‘The Guardian / Observer’

Vulliamy has worked as an international reporter for the UK Guardian and Observer for over 30 years. Topics he covered include the Balkan wars of 1991-95. His work in the Balkans earned him numerous press awards, including the 1992 Foreign Correspondent Award and the 1992 International Journalist Award. Vulliamy also reported on the Iraq War and worked as a New York correspondent after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Svitlana Slipchenko, Acting Director of VoxCheck, VOX Ukraine (IFCN Member in Ukraine)

As of December 1, 2021, Slipchenko is acting Director of VoxCheck. In recent years, she was Deputy Director of VoxCheck, overseeing the fact-finding, internship program and interns. VoxCheck monitors and verifies the statements of politicians and leaders.

PANEL 2: How to combat harmful external influences – lessons from the Western Balkans

Moderator: Besa Luci, Executive Director of Kosovo 2.0

Luci is the editor-in-chief and co-founder of Kosovo 2.0 (K2.0). In the period 2012-2019 she was an assistant in the Department of Journalism of the University of Prishtina. She holds a Master’s degree in Journalism / Journalistic Writing from the University of Missouri, School of Journalism, in Columbia, US.


Tijana Cvjetićanin, and IFCN Board Member

Cvjetićanin is co-founder of two fact-finding platforms in Bosnia and Herzegovina: Istinomjer, which measures the authenticity of public officials’ statements and tracks the promises made by political parties; and Raskrinkavanje, a fact-finding media project. During 2018-19, she was also the editor-in-chief of FemFacts, an international fact-finding project that followed reporting on women and women-related issues in the European media. Tijana also serves on the Advisory Board of the IFCN.

Ivan Angelovski, BIRN Regional Research Editor and CBC Canada Associate Producer

Angelovski is an investigative journalist and editor working on long-term international projects with the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network. He is also the associate producer of CBC in Canada. Angelkovski conducted research into China’s investment in the Balkans, published by BIRN in December 2021. It can be found here:

Filip Stojanovski, Director of Metamorphosis and certified fact verifier in Northern Macedonia

As Director of Partnership and Resource Development, Stojanovski serves as one of the leading members of the Metamorphosis Foundation team, working on projects involving the fight against misinformation, the promotion of media literacy and critical thinking, and the advancement of fact-checking, an integral segment of professional journalism. He served as a member of the Task Force for the National Strategy for the Development of the Information Society and a number of other state bodies, enabling the cooperation of civil society with other actors.

Kreshnik Gashi, Krypometer, certified fact-checker by IFCN, Kosovo

Gashi is editor-in-chief of the anti-corruption platform and one of the authors of the well-known TV show KallxoPërnime. Gashi has been awarded prizes by UNDP, the Anti-Corruption Agency, the Association of Journalists and the European Union for his reporting on corruption. He also has specialized knowledge in training journalists, media organizations, judges and prosecutors in various fields, such as in-depth investigative journalism, fact-finding and its tools and principles, and public speaking.

PANEL 3: How to combat harmful external influences – lessons from Kosovo

Moderator: Kreshnik Gashi, Krypometer, IFCN certified fact verifier, Kosovo


 Flaka Surroi, Koha Ditore

Before the war in Kosovo in 1999, Surroi worked for several international NGOs, while after the war she ran a local foundation. She worked for a time as the Permanent Secretary of the Prime Minister of Kosovo, but after the re-entry of her brother, Veton, into politics in 2003, she took over the sole management and ownership of the family-owned Koha Group. Koha Group consists of a national television broadcaster, Kohavision, Kosovo’s largest daily newspaper, Koha Ditore, a printing house and an internet service provider, Koha Net.

Aferdita Saraçini, RTV 21

Founder and general director of Radio Television 21. After losing her job as a journalist for Radio Television of Prishtina in 1990, she was inspired to found Radio 21. She has also served as President of the Women’s Chamber of Commerce in Kosovo.

 Shkumbin Ahmetxhekaj, RTK

Acting general director of Radio Television of Kosovo, RTK, he was previously an editor at RTK and reported on current affairs and news from around the world. He has also worked for several international media outlets, including Radio Free Europe.

Tatjana Lazarević, KOSSEV

She is the editor of the online media outlet North Kosovo – KOSSEV, the main Serbian-language media in Kosovo, with a current audience of over 7 million views per year. Her university education was in philology, public relations and communication.

 Gentian Lluka, Telegraph

Lluka switched to the media industry from graphic design in 2010. At a time when the future of online media was uncertain, Lluka took over the portal with only four employees. More than a decade later, it has over 60 employees, spread across three countries, Kosovo, Albania and North Macedonia. 

The event will be held at Kino Armata in Prishtina. Those interested can also join online through the ZOOM platform by registering at the link:

Fact-checking Day_Invitation and agenda_2022-03-24.pdf

04/04/2022 - 12:16

04 April 2022 - 12:16

Prishtina Insight is a digital and print magazine published by BIRN Kosovo, an independent, non-governmental organisation. To find out more about the organization please visit the official website. Copyright © 2016 BIRN Kosovo.