The headquarters of Le Soir in the center of Brussels, two blocks away from the Parliament, look serene in the spring sunshine. No sign of violence scars the glass and stone facade. But the leading Belgian francophone daily, the flagship of the Rossel media group, has suffered a concussion. On Sunday a wave of hacking attacks rocked the paper. At 07:00 p.m., the hottest moment of the day when articles were pouring in and had to be published on deadline, the Newsgate data center started to slow down, the Wifi was disabled, the journalists’ professional and personal emails were neutralized. The paper-- where I am a columnist--immediately took emergency measures, separating the Internet from the intranet, to counter the attack and prevent the hackers from taking over the websites.
New York, April 16, 2015--The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on Ukrainian authorities to identify the motive in the murder of Oles Buzina, former editor of the independent news website Segodnya, in Kiev early today. Buzina was gunned down outside of his home by two masked men who fled the scene, according to news reports. Ukraine's interior ministry has launched an investigation into the murder, the agency said on its website.
New York, April 9, 2015--The French-language global TV network TV5Monde was disrupted for three hours on Wednesday night by hackers claiming to belong to the militant group Islamic State, according to news reports. The hackers seized control of 11 channels as well as the network's website and social media accounts, the reports said. TV5Monde restored its signal by Thursday morning, but said TV broadcasts would take longer to return to normal.
Istanbul, April 8, 2015--The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on Turkish authorities to improve conditions for international reporters after news reports said German freelance photographer Andy Spyra, who flew to Istanbul to cover the anniversary of the Armenian massacre, was denied entry to the country. Separately, the trial of Dutch freelance journalist Fréderike Geerdink, who is facing terrorism charges over her reporting on the Kurdish minority, began today, according to news reports.
New York, April 8, 2015--A Russian blogger is under police guard in hospital after being abducted and attacked by at least three masked men in Derbent, in the southern republic of Dagestan, on Sunday, according to news reports citing his account. Vyacheslav Starodubets was forced into a car and taken to the outskirts of the city where he said he was questioned, beaten, and warned to leave the region within three days, regional and international press reported.
New York, March 30, 2015--The Committee to Protect Journalists denounces the deportation from Kyrgyzstan on Saturday of American freelancer Umar Farooq, who was detained and interrogated by Kyrgyz security services last week, according to news reports.
New York, March 26, 2015--The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns the detention of a journalist in the separatist Transdniester region of Moldova and calls on authorities to release him immediately. Sergei Ilchenko, a freelance contributor to local and regional media, has been held for more than a week and equipment seized from his and his son's homes, according to news reports.
New York, March 24, 2015--The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on authorities in Crimea to allow television and radio outlets based in Ukraine to broadcast in the region, following a statement made by Sergey Aksyonov, the Russia-appointed prime minister in Crimea, indicating that Ukrainian broadcasters that have been taken off the air will not be permitted to resume.
New York, March 20, 2015--The Committee to Protect Journalists is alarmed at the passage of a bill late Thursday by Turkish Parliament. The bill will allow Turkish cabinet members to ban websites deemed harmful to national security without a court order and will allow the country's telecommunications authority to impose hefty fines on websites that it believes violates the bill. The bill now awaits President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's signature.
Do you believe the free flow of information must be protected? Sign the #RightToReport petition and demand that President Obama immediately:
1. Issue a presidential policy directive prohibiting the hacking and surveillance of journalists and media organizations.
2. Limit aggressive prosecutions that ensnare journalists and intimidate whistleblowers.
3. Prevent the harassment of journalists at the U.S. border.
Or click here to see the full petition, and join leading journalists like Christiane Amanpour, The Guardian’s Alan Rusbridger, Editor of the AP Kathleen Carroll, and Arianna Huffington in signing on.