The Geneva-based global media safety and rights body, Press Emblem Campaign (PEC), has expressed shock at the sharp rise in the number of journalists killed in the first six months of 2022. The year-on-year increase is 100 per cent with 72 victims in 18 countries since January compared to 36 deaths within the same period last year
According to PEC President, Blaise Lempen, “The war in Ukraine and the rampant criminality in Mexico are the main reasons of this alarming deterioration.”
In Ukraine, the conflict triggered by Russia has claimed in 4 months 30 victims among media workers, 16 in the line of duty and 14 journalists killed in fightings as soldiers or volunteers in the army. The circumstances of each death must be independently clarified and those responsible must be brought to justice. Russian and Ukrainian authorities must ensure that journalists are not targeted while covering the ongoing fighting and that they can work freely.
According to PEC records, in six months, Mexico with 12 victims exceeded the figure for the whole of last year (10 killed) while with 4 killed, India comes after Ukraine and Mexico. Haiti, Pakistan and Yemen followed with 3 killed in each of these countries.
PEC also recorded two victims in Bangladesh, Brazil, Honduras, Israel/Palestine, and Philippines, and one victim in each of the following countries: Chad, Chile, Guatemala, Kazakhstan, Myanmar, Turkey and the United States.
PEC demanded that all these crimes must be fully investigated without exception adding: “There must be no impunity.”
In light of this very worrying deterioration, PEC renewed its call to the United Nations for the adoption of an international convention strengthening the protection of journalists with investigation and prosecution mechanisms. In 2021, 79 media were killed and 92 in 2020 for the whole year.
The list and details of journalists killed can be found on: www.pressemblem.ch.