Auteur : Millennia2025
Source : OSCE
The safety of journalists:
an urgent concern for OSCE participating States
OSCE - Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe
The safety of journalists has become an increasingly urgent issue for OSCE participating States because the scale of violence against journalists, including murders, attacks leading to serious injuries and cases of intimidation, has grown significantly over recent years with farreaching effects.
Other means of suppressing independent news media, for example through arbitrary arrests and prosecutions, oppressive political and commercial pressures, and suffocating forms of official regulation, have also become commonplace for journalists working within the OSCE region. Those actions also give rise to fear and insecurity among journalists and other members of the media and have a chilling effect on freedom of expression within whole societies.
The universal right of freedom of opinion and expression includes the right both to impart, seek and to receive information. Violence, harassment and intimidation directed against journalists represent an attack on democracy
itself. They have the effect of stifling freedom of the media and freedom of expression, depriving people of the ability to make informed decisions about issues that affect their lives.
Freedom of expression has been recognized internationally as a fundamental right on which the enjoyment of a range of other freedoms depends – such as freedom of assembly and association and the right to vote.
The right to freedom of expression in a State or society is also acknowledged to be an important indicator of the level of protection of other human rights and freedoms (UN Human Rights Council Resolution A/HRC/RES/12/16 of 12 October 2009 on Freedom of opinion and expression).
The OSCE participating States have established clear principles and commitments in the field of freedom of expression and media freedom. These are based on the conviction that freedom of expression is a fundamental human right and a basic component of a democratic society; and that free, independent and pluralistic media are essential to a free and open society and to accountable systems of government. They are also
committed to ensuring that these principles are implemented and upheld, through effective concerted action by the participating States and in full co-operation with the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media.
The safety of the media is a precondition for free media, as journalists cannot write or report freely and independently without safe working conditions. In recognition of this, the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, Dunja Mijatovic', continues to give paramount importance to halting violence and intimidation toward journalists. She has called on governments and non-governmental organizations to combine their efforts to defend the rights of free media and free expression.
In this context, a number of OSCE participating States, together with civil society and journalists' organizations, have advocated a more forward stance on the part of the OSCE to protect the safety and security of journalists. These issues have been brought forward for discussion among participating States but a consensus is required in order for further steps to be achieved.
=> Direct link to the 103 page report: http://www.osce.org/fom/118052?download=true
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