World Press Freedom Day 2022

Many IFJ affiliates are taking action to mark World Press Freedom Day on 3 May. Here is a non exhaustive list of their initiatives.

Brazil: The National Federation of Journalists (FENAJ) and the Journalistic Ethics Observatory (objETHOS) will launch next Tuesday, May 3, the dossier "Attacks on Journalism and its Right to Information", a publication that deepens the debate on violence against journalism in Brazil and its impact on the rights of society, such as the right to information. To commemorate World Press Freedom Day and to present the dossier, a live broadcast on YouTube brings together the president of the federation, Maria José Braga, and the coordinator of the research group, Rogério Christofoletti. The live begins at 19:30 with simultaneous broadcasting by journalists' union channels across Brazil on Facebook.

Cambodja: CamboJA, in collaboration with UNESCO and other CSO partners of the World Press Freedom Day working group, will organise a face-to-face debate during World Press Freedom Day to discuss and better understand the potential impact of restrictive legislation on fundamental freedoms, including the sub-decree on the establishment of the National Internet Gateway (NIG), the sub-decree on the management, use and security protection of personal identity data (PID) and the draft law on cybercrime. This year's main theme will be in line with the overarching theme "Journalism under digital siege".

Canada: Unifor’s Media Sector in Canada is planning to launch some results from an union survey on harassment of journalists. The results/media release will also highlight a new section on our website that offers information for journalists – both union, non-union and freelance – on how to respond to harassment and get help. The website launch and survey results won’t be ready until AFTER World Press Freedom Day. They are also partnering with the Council of Canadians to publish an opinion piece in a major Canadian newspaper, highlighting the problem of harassment and how it impacts journalists and democracy, and is ultimately a press freedom issue.

On World Press Freedom Day, the Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance is calling on all political parties to act on a range of reforms that are needed to ensure journalists can continue to perform their essential work finding facts, seeking the truth and holding power to account.

Croatia: On World Press Freedom Day, the Trade Union of Croatian Journalists and the Croatian Journalists' Association paid tribute to journalists killed in Ukraine and all the journalists whose freedom of speech is threatened. In a statement sent to all newsrooms, the Trade Union of Croatian Journalists' Union reiterated the need for better protection of journalism as an indispensable factor in any true democracy. Increasingly insecure and temporary work in the media, especially on numerous portals and other online media, reduces the ability of journalists to protect themselves and their profession and thus defend the credibility of the media in which they work and collaborate. 

Estonia: The Estonian Association of Journalists marks the WPFD2022 with the hybrid discussion “In Crisis with Ethics” on media ethics, media freedom and journalists’ role in the time of crisis. The presenters come from Estonia, Ukraine, Russia and Georgia.

Finland: The Finnish Journalists' Union is celebrating World Press Freedom Day in a special event in Helsinki, that will host a panel discussion about what is missing in Finnish media and journalism.

France: The National Union of Journalists (SNJ-France) is organising on 3 May at 12:30 pm, Place Ghislaine-Dupont-Claude-Verlon-Camille-Lepage in Paris (2nd arrondissement), a special ceremony for journalists "who died for information" in the presence of Anthony Bellanger, IFJ General Secretary and Dominique Pradalié, IFJ Executive Committee member. 

The SNJ and IFJ are also organising a screening of the film "Hacking Justice" and a debate "Freedom, Rehabilitation and Compensation for Julian Assange" on 3 May from 6pm to 10pm at the auditorium of the Paris City Hall. In the presence of Cédric Villani, MP; a member of Julian Assange's family; Anthony Bellanger, IFJ General Secretary; William Bourdon, lawyer; and David Dufresne, journalist and director.

The International Trade Unions Confederation (ITUC) organises a conference on human rights and unions' rights in Afghanistan on 2 May in Paris. Speakers include ITUC General Secretary Sharan Burrow, IFJ General Secretary Anthony Bellanger and General Secretaries of French unions CGT, CFDT et FO as well as an ILO representative.

Gambia: In the context of the press freedom situation in The Gambia, journalists still operate under the threat of digital surveillance and digital intrusion due to the existence of an authoritarian legal and technological framework, put in place by the former administration, that still allows unchecked government surveillance of Information Communication Technologies. GPU urges the Gambian government to speed up reforms to the media law and to respect its commitment to press freedom.

Indonesia: This year's WPFD celebration is parallel to Eid Al-Fitr, a holy day for most Indonesian muslims. Therefore, the Indonesian Independent Journalists Association celebration will take place after 3 May. The union will hold various events in 20 cities, such as debates, radio and TV talk shows, photo exhibitions and training of journalists on holistic violence. The highlight of the event will be held on 6 June with the launch of the report on press freedom in Indonesia.

Italy: On the occasion of World Press Freedom Day 2022, the Italian National Press Federation (FNSI) will be in Conselice, little town in Emilia-Romagna that hosts the Monument dedicated to press freedom: an old printing press similar to the one used by clandestine printers who during the Liberation struggle worked to inform about what was happening on the front of the National Liberation Committee. The initiative is promoted in collaboration with the Press Association of Emilia-Romagna, Emilia-Romagna Region, Province of Ravenna, the Union of Municipalities of Lower Romagna, the Municipality of Conselice. Together with the FNSI general secretary, Raffaele Lorusso, and local authorities, will be present some threatened reporters, such as Paolo Berizzi, president of the Observatory on press freedom born in Conselice last year. Since 2019 Berizzi is forced to live under guard due to threats received from neo-Nazi and neo-fascist groups.

Myanmar: The Myanmar Journalists Association will celebrate World Press Freedom Day on 3 May at the MPC office in Yangon with a round table discussion on "Real News" to reach out more to the people and fight against fake news.

Pakistan: The Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) has planned a number of programs at the federation level and regional union levels. The following events are being scheduled in the coming days in connection with World Freedom Day: Seminar at Lahore, Karachi, Islamabad; Candle Vigil in memory of martyred journalists; Rallies at regional Union level and Memorandum to be send to the government authorities.

Somalia: Shining a light on Journalism Under Digital Siege in Somalia is the focus of this year’s World Press Freedom Day. While the journalism industry in Somalia has become deft and vigilant about physical attacks against journalists, the same sense of importance is needed to address a rise in online attacks, NUSOJ says. The digital environment has brought new and targeted threats to both male and female journalists as it offers relatively easy opportunities to follow and harass members of the media community.

Spain: The UGT Grouping of Journalists (AGP-UGT) calls for the protection of journalists, firstly to safeguard their own lives - whether in their country of origin or as war correspondents - and secondly to be able to freely exercise the profession of journalism, in celebration of World Press Freedom Day, which was established by the United Nations at its General Assembly in 1993. 

The Journalists' Group and the Media Sector of Comisiones Obreras join the call of the International Federation of Journalists, of which they are members, for governments to heed the call of the trade unions to negotiate and draw up protective regulations to prevent any kind of spying on the work of the press, and for professional communications to be inviolable. 

Sri Lanka:The Federation of Media Employees Trade Unions (FMETU) will hold a seminar on "Press freedom and journalists' responsibility" near the International Media Centre, Gogotagama, Galle face. The Free Media Movement and the Sri Lanka Working Journalists Association have jointly organised a panel discussion on the theme "Democracy, Social Responsibility and Responsible Journalism", especially in the light of recent developments in Sri Lanka. Journalists who wish to attend this discussion are invited with that link.

Switzerland: Press freedom is under pressure all over the world. In Switzerland, too. The Media Syndicate presents three current examples: super-provisional decisions, which amount to muzzling media professionals, must be simplified. The Banking Law prevents investigative reporting. And the police are increasingly obstructing media professionals in their work. On the occasion of World Press Freedom Day, the union opposes any form of restriction in Switzerland and other countries.

United Kingdom: National Union of Journalists (NUJ) is holding a month-long series of online events with speakers exploring global threats to journalism. Sessions will cover the union's work campaigning for the safety of journalists, consider the use of spyware, the abuse of harmful legal challenges through SLAPPs and much more. Registration details will be live on the NUJ website soon. Members can attend all sessions for free. The Slapps Event is on May 10. 

Uruguay: The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), together with the Uruguayan Press Association (APU) and the International Federation of Journalists of Latin America and the Caribbean (FEPALC), will hold a panel discussion at the UNESCO Global Conference on World Press Freedom Day, which takes place on 3 May. The panel will focus on the situation of press workers in the region in the face of digital surveillance and the need for collective organising tools to address it.

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

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