To mark the upcoming 2013 International Day to End Impunity, the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has today written to the embassies of Iraq, Russia and Pakistan in Belgium, urging their governments to address the issue of impunity for violence against journalists in their countries.
Signed by IFJ President Jim Boumelha and IFJ General Secretary Beth Costa, the letters express the IFJ's concern about the lack of accountability for those who carry out acts of violence against journalists and urge the governments to do everything in their power to resolve all the cases of killed journalists in their countries.
The IFJ underscores that the issue of impunity for violence against journalists is "of the highest importance for the rule of law and respect for human rights in any democratic society."
The letters have been sent as part of the IFJ's high profile campaign to End Impunity which is urging the authorities of the countries with the highest death tolls of journalists to investigate these killings and bring their perpetrators to justice. The campaign is initially focusing on Iraq, Pakistan and Russia.
The campaign, which was launched on 23 October, one month before International Day to End Impunity, is already having an important impact, with many of IFJ's affiliates across the world, including the Iraqi Journalists' Syndicate and the Association of Journalists of the Republic of Poland, showing their solidarity and support by sending their own letters to the embassies of Iraq, Pakistan and Russia in their countries.
As International Day to End Impunity approaches, the IFJ is marking the important day with a range of actions and events:
- The IFJ General Secretary Beth Costa has recorded a video message calling for affiliates to take action. Watch it here
- IFJ and its affiliates across the world are holding a number of actions to mark the important day.
- On Saturday, the IFJ and the EFJ are holding a public debate in Kiev on the status of key cases across the former Soviet Union region and the efforts needed to e maintain pressure on authorities for action and pay tribute to the killed journalists. IFJ President Jim Boumelha and EFJ President Mogens Blicher-Bjerregård will be present to mark the day of action which will also include a silent march through the street of the city.
Find out what other actions are being taken across the world at http://www.ifj.org/en/pages/end-impunity-international-day-to-end-impunity-page
IFJ Affiliates can show their support for International Day to End Impunity by:
• Supporting the IFJ's End Impunity campaign by sending their own letters to the embassies of Iraq, Pakistan and Russia in their regions, or directly to the governments of the three countries. To print off or download a copy of each of the letters go to: http://www.ifj.org/en/pages/end-impunity
• Visiting the IFJ's ‘End Impunity' Facebook page, which is full of information and updates on the issue of impunity in Russia, Pakistan and Iraq. We encourage you LIKE the campaign page and write a message of support.
• Following the IFJ Twitter page @IFJGlobal. You are welcome to share and schedule tweets to go out, culminating on Saturday 23, the International Day to End Impunity. Wherever possible, please use our hashtag #EI_IFJ
Below are some sample tweets you can use to highlight impunity in Russia, Pakistan and Iraq:
#EndImpunity for Violence Against Journalists in #Iraq #EI_IFJ @IFJGlobal
#EndImpunity for Violence Against Journalists in #Russia #EI_IFJ @IFJGlobal
#EndImpunity for Violence Against Journalists in #Pakistan #EI_IFJ @IFJGlobal
For more information, please contact IFJ on + 32 2 235 22 17
The IFJ represents more than 600 000 journalists in 134 countries