The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and its regional
group, the European Federation of Journalists ( EFJ) today backed the petition
to the Constitutional Court in Colombia by the Federation of Colombian
Journalists (Fecolper) in a bid to strengthen press freedom in the country.
In a letter sent to Fecolper for inclusion in the submissions to the
Colombian constitutional court in support of the appeal to decriminalize
defamation, the IFJ and EFJ note the clear and direct threat to press freedom
when media are forced to practice self- censorship over cases involving the
powerful and wealthy.
"The threat of prison has a clear chilling effect on the media and
stifles investigative journalism that is so vital for exposing corruption,
protecting human rights and building democracy," says the letter
The letter, signed by IFJ General Secretary Aidan White and EFJ
President Arne König, urged the Court to reform the law on defamation. It
further pointed to the European example where the Case Law of the European
Court of Human Rights and position of the Parliament Assembly of the Council of
Europe promote the decriminalisation of defamation.
For more information,
please contact IFJ on + 32 2 235 22 07
The IFJ represents more than
600.000 members in 125 countries