IMPUNITY: n. without punishment, without consequence
“This campaign is reminding the world that journalists do matter. They have families who love them, they are mums and dads, ordinary people; all carrying out the important and increasingly dangerous duty to keep society informed. But for every reporter threatened, for every life extinguished, democracy also suffers the ultimate price.”
Journalists across the Asia-Pacific continue to be harassed, threatened, tortured, intimidated, jailed and worse for exercising their basic right to report and inform. Most crimes go unpunished.
This November, the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) asks you to join and support our regional campaign against impunity for attacks on journalists and media workers.
Each year, the IFJ launches it annual End Impunity campaign with the aim to highlight the culture of impunity across the world for crimes against journalists. The campaign is launched on November 2, the UN International Day to End Impunity for Crimes Against Journalists and end on November 23, the anniversary of the Ampatuan Massacre, the single deadliest attack on journalists in history.
Although there are a few triumph stories around the world of cases that are successfully resolved, the culture of impunity still looms large, with almost 9 out of 10 cases of violence against journalists going unprosecuted.
The IFJ Asia Pacific's End Impunity campaign this year highlights the extent of impunity for crimes against journalists across the world, and hones in on 'cultures' of impunity that are being fostered in different countries in the Asia Pacific, particularly those in India, Afghanistan, Pakistan and the Philippines. India and Pakistan are focus countries of the IFJ's global campaign.
Facts on Impunity:
Between 1990 and 2015; 571 journalists have been killed in the Asia Pacific region - see the IFJ killed report here
That's an average of 33 deaths per year, or 1 every 11 days
Most are killed by shootings, explosions and vehicle accidents
Only 1 in 10 journalists killers are prosecuted
11 journalists in the Asia Pacific region are missing - http://www.ifj.org/missing/
Countries in the Asia-Pacific with a culture of impunity:
AFGHANISTAN: remains an unstable environment for journalists, highlighted by the gruesome suicide bombing of media workers from TOLO TV in January 2016
PAKISTAN: remains a volatile environment for media workers with gradual action on impunity beginning to have an impact.
INDIA: has seen a marked decline in the safety situation for journalists in the last 3 years, with a lack of political will to solve cases of violence.
PHILIPPINES: has been a killing field for journalists throughout history, exemplified most clearly by the 2009 Ampatuan Massacre in which 32 journalists were killed. Not a single person has been bought to justice, 7 years later. The human rights situation remains highly concerning under President Rodrigo Duterte.
INDONESIA: is an unpredictable political and religious climate for media workers, with a particularly concerning involvement of state actors in the repression of press freedom.
How can you get involved?
Share your photos and videos on impunity with the IFJ; email ifj(at)ifj-asia(dot)org or tag online @IFJAsiaPacific
Use IFJ resources to promote the campaign and demand an end to Impunity
Follow the IFJ Impunity Conference in Brussels on November 7 and support the outcomes - @IFJGlobal
“Writers stop writing. Reporters stop reporting. People stop expressing themselves, and that diminishes democracy.”
Visit the IFJ global campaign page to download the campaign materials
Stay in touch with activities by:
a. Liking the IFJ AP page https://www.facebook.com/IFJAsiaPacific?fref=ts h
b. Follow us on Twitter @ifjasiapacific
c. Email us at ifj(at)ifj-asia(dot)org
d. Social media #EndImpunity #IFJ #NoImpunity #IFJmissing