Progress in Journalist Assault Case in Vanuatu

The International

Federation of Journalists (IFJ) joins the Pacific Freedom Forum (PFF) in

welcoming progress in the brutal assault of Vanuatu

Daily Post publisher Marc Neil-Jones.

Vanuatu’s Government

Infrastructure and Public Utilities Minister, Harry Iauko, and eight others are

set to appear in the Port Vila Magistrate’s Court on June 10 facing charges

related to the assault on Neil-Jones by a group of men at the Daily Post offices on March 4.

During the assault Neil-Jones was hit on the head from

behind, kicked, and throttled by his attackers during the assault, leaving him shaken

and with visible injuries.

The charges relate to unlawful assembly, unlawful

entry, intentional assault and threatening gestures, according to reports. If

the criminal case against Iauko succeeds, the minister may also face charges

under Vanuatu's

Leadership Code Act which calls for national leaders to observe the law, and

follow fundamental principles of leadership contained in Article 66 of the



“Although there have been some delays, the IFJ is

encouraged to see progress in this case,” IFJ Asia-Pacific

Director Jacqueline Park said.


“Journalists in Vanuatu and across the Pacific must

know that the justice system will come to their aid if they are the victims of

attacks, so they can be confident to report the news without fear or favour.”



For further

information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific

on +61 2 9333 0919



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