Geneva – The number of journalists killed continued to increase from January to the end of June 2016 to reach 74 in 22 countries (3 per week on average), according to the NGO Press Emblem Campaign (PEC).
During the same period (January to June) and with the same criteria 71 journalists were killed in 2015 (reaching 135 for the whole year), 66 in 2014 (138 for the whole year), 59 in 2013 (129 for the whole year).
PEC Secretary-General Blaise Lempen said that despite the many meetings held on the issue of the safety of journalists, the adoption of UN resolutions, measures undertaken to enhance training and protection, the so many condemnations, we have not been able to hold the breaks on the terrible tally. We must do more in the fight against impunity.
He added that it is clear that unresolved and ongoing conflicts are the source of the high price paid by journalists for informing the general public.
Afghanistan from the outset of this year has been the most dangerous country for media work with 10 journalists killed, Syria the second with 9 media workers killed.
Mexico follows with 8 killed, then Iraq and Yemen with 7 in each country.
5 journalists were killed in Guatemala, and 4 in each of the following countries: India, Pakistan and Turkey (where 2 Syrian journalists were killed by ISIS).
2 journalists were killed in the Philippines, 2 in Russia and 2 in El Salvador during the first six months of 2016.
One journalist was killed in the following countries: Bangladesh, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Guinea, Honduras, Libya, Serbia, United States, Somalia and Venezuela.
The PEC strongly condemns those attacks and calls upon the governments to assume their obligations and brings the perpetrators to justice.
Without an independent inquiry it is very difficult to know why the journalists were killed. Around two thirds of journalists were intentionally targeted, while a third was killed in fighting, the same source pointed out.
This is an alarming trend that a great number of media workers are intentionally eliminated by terrorist organizations in particular by ISIS. From January to June a dozen of them were killed by ISIS in Turkey, Syria and Iraq. The Taliban are responsible for the killing of ten journalists in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
The Press Emblem Campaign (PEC) is a non-governmental organization (NGO) with Special consultative UN status. The PEC, founded in June 2004 by a group of journalists from several countries, based in Geneva, is an international independent nonprofit and non-governmental organization. It aims at strengthening the legal protection and safety of journalists in zones of conflict and civil unrest or in dangerous missions.