World broadcasters urge UN action on journalist deaths

15th November 2013, Comments 0 comments

Some of the world's biggest broadcasters on Friday urged the UN Security Council to take greater action over the killing of journalists in conflict zones.

The organisations including the BBC, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation and Japan's NHK said the dangers facing their reporters were making it difficult to provide accurate news from some corners of the world.

"Increasing violence and intimidation against journalists means that the work of international broadcasters is being impeded," the statement said.

"We are deeply concerned that in some parts of the world acts and threats of violence against journalists are growing in scale and intensity."

The statement was also issued on behalf of the Broadcasting Board of Governors from the United States, France Medias Monde, Radio Netherlands Worldwide and Germany's Deutsche Welle.

It cited the deaths of journalists this year in Mali, Egypt, Syria, Somalia, Pakistan and Mexico, plus increasing numbers of arrests and violence towards journalists in Yemen.

"A total around the world of over 60 journalists, bloggers and citizen journalists have been killed with around 340 imprisoned," it said, quoting figures from Reporters Without Borders.

United Nations Security Council Resolution 1738 says journalists should be treated as civilians in conflict zones and therefore attacks on them could be considered as war crimes.

The broadcasters expressed concern that the 2006 resolution "has not led to an overall improvement in the situation".

"We urge the Security Council to be more proactive in making the world aware of this problem -- especially with regard to the impunity of those who attack journalists and media workers," they said.

"In too many cases, journalists are killed and governments do little, or nothing."


© 2013 AFP

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