Leaders of more than 30 news organizations around the world, including the Associated Press, Agence France-Presse, and Reuters, have joined an open letter on Thursday affirming that they “stand united with Palestinian journalists in their call for safety, protection, and the freedom to report.”
The letter, coordinated by the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) with the support of the World Association of News Publishers (WAN-IFRA), emphasizes the perilous environment for members of the press covering the Israel-Gaza war, the deadliest conflict for journalists ever documented by CPJ.
“For nearly five months, journalists and media workers in Gaza – overwhelmingly, the sole source of on-the-ground reporting from within the Palestinian territory – have been working in unprecedented conditions,” the letter reads. “These journalists – on whom the international news media and the international community rely for information about the situation inside Gaza – continue to report despite grave personal risk.”
“Attacks on journalists are also attacks on the truth,” the letter states, reminding the international community that journalists are civilians and authorities must protect journalists as noncombatants according to international law.
Senegalese reporter Ndèye Maty Niang, also known as Maty Sarr Niang, would have likely jumped at the chance to report on the political crisis gripping her country since the president postponed elections in early February. But Niang can’t cover the news – she’s in a women’s prison awaiting trial.
She’s not alone: Niang is one of at least five journalists jailed since last year in Senegal in connection with their work. It’s the highest number ever recorded in the country since CPJ began keeping track in 1992 with its annual December 1 prison census.
In a new feature, CPJ’s Moussa Ngom and Jonathan Rozen look at how journalist detentions are indicative of a broader crackdown on press freedom and dissent that has continued since Senegal’s election delay.
–Safety resource for covering protests in Senegal
-Watch: Journalists in Senegal attacked, harassed, detained amid political unrest
We defend the right of journalists to report the news safely and without fear of reprisal.
Hamza Al Dahdouh
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Al-Jazeera Arabic, Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory
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Al-Mayadeen TV, Lebanon