IFJ Hails Milestone Victory of Journalist on Protection of Sources in Northern Ireland


International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has today welcomed the decision

of the court in Belfast, Northern Ireland,

to dismiss the application of the Police Services of Northern Ireland (PSNI) about forcing the Sunday Tribune's

journalist, Suzanne Breen, to reveal her source for the story she published on

the murder of two British soldiers by the Real IRA.


is a historic victory in the journalists' fight for the protection of sources,"

said Aidan White, IFJ General Secretary. "It is a milestone achievement for

Suzanne and the National Union of Journalists in Great

Britain and Ireland

who have supported her throughout the process."


Burgess, hearing the application, today ruled that granting the application

would breach the journalist's right to life under the European Convention on Human Rights.


PSNI was seeking a court order against Suzanne to hand over material, including

tapes and notes which contained information of her source and a member of the

paramilitary group, the Real IRA, which claimed responsibility for the murder of

the soldiers in March.


IFJ supported the arguments of Suzanne that handing over the material for her

story would not just infringe her right as a journalist to protect her source,

but also put her at the serious risk of violence from the paramilitary group.


decision spares our colleague a real and serious risk to her safety," added

White. "The PSNI sought to turn media into unwilling police informants at the

expense of independent and safe journalism."

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The IFJ represents over 600,000 journalists

in 123 countries worldwide