October 17, 2001 – The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) will present its 2001 International Press Freedom Awards to four journalists from China, Zimbabwe, Argentina, and the West Bank who have defied death threats, braved bullets, and endured jail to report the news.
The 11th Annual Press Freedom Awards will be presented at a dinner ceremony at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City on Tuesday, November 20.
The 2001 CPJ International Press Freedom Award recipients are:
Jiang Weiping, a veteran journalist currently imprisoned in China on charges of “revealing state secrets” for his aggressive reports on official corruption;
Geoff Nyarota, the editor of Zimbabwe’s only independent daily newspaper, which has been a relentless critic of President Robert Mugabe. Nyarota has been threatened and jailed, and his paper has been bombed twice;
Horacio Verbitsky, who has blazed a trail for Argentina’s press by exposing government corruption, reporting fearlessly on past atrocities, and battling for the repeal of the country’s restrictive press laws;
Mazen Dana, a cameraman for Reuters in the West Bank city of Hebron who has been beaten repeatedly and shot on several occasions while covering clashes between Palestinians and Jewish settlers.
CPJ will also honor Joseph Lelyveld, former executive editor of The New York Times, with the Burton Benjamin Memorial Award for a lifetime of distinguished professional achievement and devotion to the cause of press freedom.
Gene Roberts, chairman of CPJ’s board of directors, said, “We pay tribute to these four brave journalists who have risked their lives to challenge tyranny, oppose censorship, and search for the truth.”
Robert W. Pittman, co-chief operating officer of AOL Time Warner, will chair the dinner, which will be hosted by NBC News anchor Tom Brokaw. Joining Brokaw as speakers at the awards ceremony are: Dan Rather, CBS News anchor, Carol Guzy of The Washington Post, Alberto Ibargüen of The Miami Herald, Dean Baquet of The Los Angeles Times, and Andrea Koppel of CNN.
Ann Cooper, CPJ executive director, said of the awardees, “Each of these journalists, with pictures or words, has revealed stories that others wanted to hide. Each has been attacked for doing his job too well.”
Read more about the awardees: