The International Federation of Journalists today welcomed the detailed report Killing the Messenger released by the International News Safety Institute (INSI). The study provides critical analysis of a crisis of violence facing media staff over the past ten years which has claimed more than 1,000 lives.
“This report confirms the shocking reality that journalists and the people who work with them are at risk today more than ever before,” said Christopher Warren, IFJ President. “It is a wake-up call to the industry and the international political community – we must do more to find and prosecute the killers and we must act together to reduce the risks our people face.”
The IFJ says the report, which says that twice a week over the past decade a journalist or media staffer has been killed, reinforces the calls made by the United Nations Security Council in December for governments to do more to challenge impunity in the killing of journalists.
“Every journalist and every media organisation should study this report in its detail,” said Warren. “It provides clear evidence that the industry must work together to address this crisis. Every union and every employer should pledge to adopt a joint strategy to confront the threats we all face.”
One of the key recommendations of the report calls for social dialogue and media organisations and unions to work together to help build a culture of safety within the industry.
The reports says that although media attention is paid always to foreign correspondents at risk in war zones, more than three quarters of media deaths take place in regions where no open conflict exists and the vast majority of those who die are killed in their own countries.
INSI was created in 2003 on the proposal of the IFJ and the International Press Institute, which brings together media executives and employers, and the IFJ says that its work has underscored the need for co-operation to confront the safety crisis.
The IFJ will be reinforcing this message in Colombia on May 3 when, on the occasion of World Press Freedom Day, press freedom groups and media employers will be joining a special event to focus on the global safety crisis in media.
For more information contact the IFJ at 32 2 235 2207
The IFJ represents over 500,000 journalists in more than 100 countries worldwide