Donnerstag, 19.05.2022 22:53 Uhr

World Press Freedom Day

Verantwortlicher Autor: Carlo Marino Rome, 03.05.2022, 12:39 Uhr
Presse-Ressort von: Dr. Carlo Marino Bericht 2913x gelesen

Rome [ENA] The pandemic and the recent conflict in Ukraine have been a serious challenge for the integrity of the journalists. Faced with this extremely difficult environment, journalists have responded with unprecedented determination. In December 1993, on the recommendation of the UNESCO General Conference, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed World Press Freedom Day and every May 3rd is celebrated

all over the world. The link between the freedom to seek, disseminate and receive information is vital to democracy. This year's theme, 'Journalism under the digital siege' aims to highlight the new tools through which journalism is endangered both by undue surveillance and control and by attacks against journalists and the consequences this has on public confidence in digital communications. In countries where press freedom is guaranteed, journalists have the right to work independently, without authorizations and without risking disciplinary, administrative or criminal sanctions due to the information provided and regardless of the chosen means of communication (print media, radio, television, web).

Freedom of the press is certainly the fundamental parameter by which the democracy of a state is measured and, in fact, from the quality and quantity of information circulating in a specific place it is possible to trace its form of government, so if it is a dictatorship or a free country. Freedom of the press is one of the rights on which the democratic state is founded and, for this reason, it has constitutional significance together with the right to health, work and education. The Press Freedom Index, an annual ranking of 180 countries of the world compiled and published by Reporters Without Borders starting from the answers of the experts to a questionnaire administered by the same Organization,

is based on the degree of freedom that the journalists and information organizations in different countries. The evaluation criteria used in the questionnaire are: pluralism, independence and the media environment, self-censorship, the legislative framework, transparency and quality of the infrastructures for the production of news and information. The qualitative data are combined with the quantitative data on the abuses and acts of violence suffered by journalists during the reporting period. In 2022, Italy occupies the fifty-eighth place out of 180 countries. Italy ranks after North Macedonia with a worsening compared to previous years. The top five places in the ranking are Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Estonia and Finland.

According to data from the UNESCO Observatory of Killed Journalists, however, between the beginning of 2016 and the end of 2020, 400 journalists around the world were killed. This is a decrease of almost 20% compared to the previous five-year period (2011-2015), during which the Observatory had recorded 491 murders. According to UNESCO, 55 journalists and media workers were killed worldwide in 2021, the lowest number in over a decade. However, the downward trend is not entirely reassuring: data collected by the Committee To Protect Journalists (CPJ) shows that detentions of journalists have increased globally. Journalists also experience many other forms of violence, including online violence, a dynamic that prompts many of them

many of them to self-censor. The general figure of a global decrease in the number of journalist murders is encouraging in itself, but the situation varies considerably by region. In particular, Asia and the Pacific, Western Europe and North America are regions where the situation has worsened. Even more specifically, with regard to both killings and detentions, most of the cases occur in less than two dozen countries, while there are many in which no cases of murder or imprisonment are reported.

Furthermore, it is important to remember that often, but not always, killings are perpetrated by non-state actors or occur in countries affected by armed conflict. UNESCO stressed that impunity for crimes against journalists remains "alarmingly widespread". 87% of all killings of journalists since 2006 remain unsolved, because the investigation is still ongoing, the case is unsolved or information on the judicial procedure is not provided by the Member State concerned. Since UNESCO began systematically monitoring journalist killings and related trials in 2006 through December 31, 2020, a total of 1,229 journalists have been killed. Of these, only 163 cases (13%) are currently considered resolved.

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