IFJ's affiliates' activities to mark World Press Freedom Day

Here is a list of IFJ's affiliates' activities to mark World Press Freedom Day, scheduled on May 3.

Democratic Republic of Congo: the Press National Union in Congo (UNPC) organised a forum on May 2 together with UNESCO, MONUSCO and the UN office for human rights in DRC (BCNUDH). On May 3 there was an official ceremony with the participation of the Heads of State or its representative. On May 4 an award ceremony rewarded the best young journalists in all kind of media as well as young female journalists.

France: with the support of the SNJ the city of Paris has named a square after Ghislaine Dupont, Claude Verlon and Camille Lepage, journalists that were killed in Mali and the Central African Republic in 2013 and 2014, in order to mark World Press Freedom Day. Other French unions support this action.

Indonesia: the Alliance of Independent Journalists (AJI) celebrated World Press Freedom Day with various rallies and discussions on the state of press freedom in Indonesia. Violence against journalists is on the rise: based on the data published by the AJI, there were 64 cases of attacks on journalists in 2018, up from 60 cases in 2017.

Italy: together with other press freedom organisations, the FNSI took part in various events to mark World Press Freedom Day. In Roma on May 3 there wias a sit-in in front of the Maltese embassy with the participation of journalists from other European countries, in relation to the killing of journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia in October 2017. In the afternoon,  a meeting was held on the issues of how to contrast hate speeches and how to use a correct language in the media. Lectures were given in Trento (on May 2) and in Reggio Calabria (on May 3) on issues such as the citizens' right to information.

Malaysia: in a statement published on World Press Freedom Day, the National Union of Journalists Malaysia (NUJM) urged the newly elected government to repeal the 1984 Printing, Presses and Publishing Act (PPPA) along with other relevant laws and regulations that curb the freedom of the press in Malaysia. Besides, a charity bazaar was organised and the collected funds will be used to help the union's members in need.

Myanmar: the Myanmar Journalists Association (MJA) released a statement demanding the government to strengthen its commitment to protect press freedom in the country. 

Pakistan: the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) called on the government to take immediate steps to ensure their security. Five journalists and media workers were killed in Pakistan last year.

The Philippines: the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) together with different organisations defending press freedom and free expression in the Philippines held the Freedom Festival. They had different events, including discussions, protests, online screening, the organisation of the Festival Jam, among others. The event is important since media in the country are facing threats, particularly after the Presidential Palace denounced an alleged plot of the media and groups of lawyers to take down the government.

Portugal: the SDJ gets involved in the European elections campaign and calls on citizens to vote. You can find the video here.

Serbia: the Journalists' Association of Serbia (JAS) organised on April 22 a conference to mark the 20th anniversary of the NATO bombing against Serbian national broadcaster RTS building that killed 16 media workers. 20 years later nobody has been held accountable for this crime.

Somalia: The National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) commemorates by calling for the realignment of Somalia’s media laws with the provisional constitutional provisions and international standards on freedom of expression, media freedom and access to information.

South Sudan: on World Press Freedom Day, the Union of Journalists of South Sudan (UJOSS) organised a one day Conference on "Media for Democracy and Peace: Promoting Sustainable Peace and Democracy in South Sudan"that will bring together media stakeholders (Media Authority, the regulator, Information Ministry, Communications Authority, Media Houses, journalists and civil society activists) to address the state of the media in South Sudan including achievements, challenges and the way forward, as well as safety of journalists, especially for female journalists. Journalists also shared their working experiences.

Sri Lanka: on May 3, the Free Media Movement organised a panel discussion on "Reporting sensitive incidents; Responsibilities and Challenges of Media". 

Timor-Leste: Timor-Leste Press Union (TLPU) together with Timor-Leste Journalists Association (AJTL) had a long march along the Press Freedom Street. They walked around 3 kilometers to spread the message on how important it is to protect press freedom in Timor-Leste. Journalists also visited the place where Sander Robert Thoenes, a journalist working for Financial Times in Dili, was killed on September 21, 1999.

United Kingdom: the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) paid a tribute to journalists worldwide who are in prison or who were killed while doing their job, including Lyra McKee, who was shot down on April 18 during a riot in Londonderry, Northern Ireland. 

Ukraine: the National Union of journalists of Ukraine (NUJU) organised on April 25 a Congress to mark its 60th anniversary oand to discuss press freedom in Ukraine. With more than 100 media professionals from around the country, the Union approved the continuation of a campaign calling on Ukrainian politicians to sign a Declaration on the Defense of Freedom of Speech (aimed at protecting the rights of journalists, overcoming hostility and combating impunity).

The IFJ took part in UNESCO Global conference in Addi Ababa, Ethiopia and run a pannel on Journalism under the Firing Line: Facing the Challenges of Covering Elections in the Digital AgeIt also organised a pannel on "Working as journalist in exile" at Brussels' Bozar's Difference Day.

For more information, please contact IFJ on +32 2 235 22 16

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