The Committee to Protect Journalists today joined seven Brazilian and international press freedom organizations in publishing an open letter addressed to Rodrigo Pacheco, president of Brazil’s Federal Senate, and Arthur Lira, president of the Chamber of Deputies, calling on Congressional leaders to protect press freedom and journalist safety in the country.
The letter, published today to coincide with Brazil’s National Day of the Journalist, describes an increasingly hostile environment for the Brazilian press. Members of the media, it says, face “difficulty in accessing public data, judicial censorship, content removal, threats and physical attacks, smear campaigns and online harassment.” It also notes the continued high rates of impunity for crimes against journalists in Brazil and says that “despite its international commitments and guarantees established in the Federal Constitution of 1988, Brazil has failed to protect press freedom and is at risk of setbacks.”
The document includes seven recommended actions that Brazil’s Congress should take to better protect journalists and ensure greater transparency and access to information, and calls on Pacheco and Lira to ensure that future legislation in both houses of Congress does not restrict press freedom or the work of journalists.
Representatives of the eight organizations presented the letter and recommendations in a virtual meeting with Pacheco this afternoon.
The full text of the letter in Portuguese can be found here.