11/07/2017
 

Press accreditations stripped and violence against journalists at G20 protests in Hamburg

Protesters throw stones at riot police on July 7, 2017 in Hamburg, northern Germany, where leaders of the world's top economies gather for a G20 summit. Protesters clashed with police and torched patrol cars in fresh violence ahead of the G20 summit, police said. German police and protestors had clashed already the day before at an anti-G20 march, with police using water cannon and tear gas to clear a hardcore of masked anti-capitalist demonstrators, AFP reporters said.

At least 32 journalists have been deprived of their press accreditations by the German government during the G20 protests in Hamburg held on 7 July. The International and European Federation of Journalists (IFJ-EFJ) join their German affiliates DJU and Ver.di (DJV) in condemning the attacks against the press.

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Europe, TOP NEWS, Africa, Latin America, Asia Pacific, Middle East and Arab World, Libertad de Prensa, Proyectos, Informes y Publicaciones, Política

At least 32 journalists have been deprived of their press accreditations by the German government during the G20 protests in Hamburg held on 7 July. The International and European Federation of Journalists (IFJ-EFJ) join their German affiliates DJU and Ver.di (DJV) in condemning the attacks against the press.

Nine journalists have had their accreditations revoked with an additional 23 placed on a list detailing them as a security concern. Those listed were not present at the G20 Press Center, according to IFJ/EFJ affiliates.

Government spokesperson Steffan Seibert confirmed the removal of the accreditations but didn’t provide any justification for it.

Media outlet Weser Kurier has filed an objection to the Federal Press Office after their photographer Rafael Heygster had his accreditation revoked. DJU member Born Kietzmann has also spoken out against the removal of his accreditation.

According to German unions’ reports a number of journalists were subjected to verbal and physical abuse from German riot police including threats, beatings and pepper sprayings despite journalists being clearly identifiable.

The DJV and the German Journalists’ Union (DJU) lodged complaints to the Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA).

“The way BKA dealt with accreditations is legally highly questionable,” said Cornelia Hass, chairwoman of the German Journalists’ Union (DJU). Several members have contacted the DJU since Friday, due to their accreditations being withdrawn.

Reporters of German newspapers Taz, Junge Welt, Weser Kurier and Analyse&Kritik were stripped of their papers, with the identical justification of “safety-related findings”.

One cannot help but think this happened for the reason to prevent disagreeable media coverage,” says Hass. “This procedure defies our democratic principles, therefore we filed an objection with the authorities.”

DJV has called the decision to withdraw press accreditations “entirely arbitrary".  DJV chair Frank Überall has requested the Federal Office of Investigation (BKA) to not impose any further restrictions on journalists. In a letter addressed today to the BKA, DJV President Holger Münch asked the Office to justify their approach against journalists.

 

 

 

 


 

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