IFJ Condemns Threats to PNG Film Crew

 

The International Federation of Journalists

(IFJ) joins its partner the Pacific Freedom Forum (PFF) in condemning threats

and intimidation directed towards a film crew working in Papua New Guinea (PNG)’s

 capital, Port Moresby, on Sunday June

10.

 

According to the PFF,

EMTV Journalist Mick Kavera and camera operator Gesoko Adrian were threatened

with physical violence and forced to delete their footage by members of a

government-appointed investigative task force.

 

The two were on assignment at Port Moresby’s Jackson

Airport Terminal to film the arrival of alleged illegal immigrants being

accompanied by members of the government-appointed investigative task force.

According to Kavera, task force members witnessed them filming during the

mid-morning arrival and approached them, berating themfor media

"misreporting" of their activities and telling them to await a formal

statement. Adrian was also told to delete all the footage he had taken that day

or the camera would be broken and he would be assaulted.

 

Sometime after Adrian had deleted the

footage, the task force members apparently apologised for their earlier orders,

and invited the EMTV crew to resume filming and complete their assignment.

 

“Threats against journalists in retribution for perceived negative reporting  is a clear violation of media rights. The press should be

able to report freely on events in the public interest without fear for their

personal safety”, said the IFJ Asia-Pacific.

 

“The IFJ joins the PFF in demanding quick and

effective action to investigate this latest case of media intimidation, and urges PNG's government and media organisations to work together to ensure journalists are not exposed to threats to their safety in the course of their work”.

 

Intimidation and threats against media

workers have been previously identified as a key obstacle to improved journalism

in PNG by the country’s new PNG Media Workers Association. The issue was also highlighted

in the PNG country chapter in the IFJ

Asia Pacific Inaugural Pacific Press Freedom report.

IFJ has identified journalists’ safety as one of the top obstacles to press freedom globally.

 

For

further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +612 9333 0950

 

The IFJ

represents more than 600,000 journalists in 131 countries

 

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the IFJ on Twitter: @ifjasiapacific

 

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