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Introduction

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The European Ombudsman is committed to ensuring that citizens, NGOs, associations and companies, are aware of their right to complain about maladministration in the EU institutions. The Ombudsman recognises the important role that the media play in informing public opinion, enriching debate, and in increasing the visibility of his services in all the EU Member States. A pro-active media policy constitutes a central component of his activities and of his efforts to promote respect for rights under EU law and to improve the quality of administration.

The Ombudsman's media policy is based on a twin approach: On the one hand, he seeks to inform the wider European public about his work via the generalised media (e.g., TV, newspapers, radio). On the other, he targets specific groups of potential complainants via more specialised media (e.g., economic or consumer magazines and internal newsletters of associations, NGOs and interest groups).

The Ombudsman aims to be as transparent and accessible as possible for journalists in order to allow the public to follow his work. He provides information to the media about the start of investigations, friendly solutions accepted by institutions to satisfy complainants, important draft recommendations addressed to institutions and decisions closing inquiries. The Ombudsman also informs the media about his Annual Report, the latest statistics, his contributions to ongoing public debates and initiatives, and other Ombudsman-related topics which are relevant to the public. While the Ombudsman aims to make his work as open as possible, he respects the legitimate demands of complainants who choose to have their cases treated confidentially.

The Ombudsman aims to reach out to the Brussels-based European correspondents as well as to national and regional journalists in all the EU Member States. He informs the media mainly via press releases, press conferences, background discussions, and interviews. He strives to provide reader-friendly and simple messages in order to be of maximum service to journalists.

For further information about the Ombudsman's media activities, please contact: Ms Gundi Gadesmann, Media and External Relations Officer, Tel. +32 2 284 26 09.