2012 a deadly year for journalists

2012-12-31 21:32
Tunisian journalist demonstrates outside the national journalists union to demand more freedom in the press in Tunis. (AP)

Tunisian journalist demonstrates outside the national journalists union to demand more freedom in the press in Tunis. (AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Brussels - A heavy death toll in war zones such as Syria and Somalia made 2012 one of the bloodiest years for journalists, with 121 killed, an international journalists' group said on Monday.

The Brussels-based International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) said the figure was up from 107 journalists and other media workers killed in targeted attacks, bomb blasts and cross-fire incidents in 2011.

The heavy casualties were the result of a "systematic failure by governments and the United Nations to fulfil their international obligations to protect and enforce journalists' basic right to life", the group said.

"The death toll for 2012 is another indictment of governments which pay lip service to the protection of journalists but have consistently failed to stop their slaughter," Jim Boumelha, IFJ president, said in a statement.

Syria, where more than 45 000 people are estimated to have been killed in a 21-month revolt against President Bashar Assad, topped the list of the most dangerous countries for media in 2012, with 35 journalists or other media workers killed.

Plan of action

The IFJ said 18 journalists had been killed in 2012 in Somalia, where African peacekeepers are battling al-Qaeda-linked Islamist rebels, turned the country into a media killing field.

Organised crime in Mexico and insurgents in Pakistan were blamed for the 10 journalists killed in each of those countries during the year.

Five each were killed in Iraq and the Philippines.

The IFJ, which represents more than 600 000 journalists in 134 countries, said that, in many cases, journalists were deliberately targeted because of their work and with the aim of silencing them.

The group said it was counting on a new UN plan of action on the safety of journalists to deliver. The plan includes helping countries draw up laws promoting freedom of expression, awareness campaigns about media freedoms and threats to journalists, and guidance on keeping journalists safe.

The IFJ's figure for journalists' deaths was higher than the total reported by a Paris-based rights group on 19 December. That group, Reporters Without Borders, said 88 journalists were killed doing their job in 2012, more than in any year since monitoring started 17 years ago.
Read more on:    security

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Millions of plastic particles in our food!

Scientists and researchers believe that almost five million tons of plastic is dumped in the oceans every year and it’s affecting our food.



Plastic on your plate
Prince George the green prince?
Lean, green, drifiting machine
One man's $1 million vision for an eco Africa

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts

It may be hard to maintain a steady rhythm as you find yourself juggling a zillion things. Slow down a little and let go of some...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.