Press freedom under attack around the world in 2018: Death Watch Data
Why in news?
- Press freedom faced a slew of attacks around the world in 2018, as political leaders unwilling to accept scrutiny increasingly jail, prosecute or undermine the credibility of critical journalists.
Death Watch Data:
- The Vienna-based International Press Institute (IPI) is organisation of editors, journalists and media executives in its Death Watch’ said as many as 78 journalists were killed in 2018
- IPI has been compiling annual data on the killings of journalists since 1997 as part of its press freedom and safety of journalist programmes.
- The Death Watch data for 2018 show that as many as 28 reporters and journalists were killed in targeted attacks during the year, while 11 died covering armed conflict.
- There is a growing movement, including in countries once seen as guarantors of fundamental rights, aimed at destroying the press as an institution of democracy.
- This atmosphere of intolerance toward independent journalism is putting the lives and freedom of journalists at risk and threatening the public’s right to know.
- 2018 witnessed an overall decline in the state of press freedom worldwide amid a trend of increased harassment and intimidation of journalists and attacks on independent media.
- Mexico and Afghanistan were the deadliest countries for journalists were overall, with 13 deaths each.
- Investigations in a large number of cases are slow and tardy, due in many cases to a lack of political will to bring the killers and perpetrators to justice.
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