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Blog   |   Journalist Assistance, Syria

Supporting journalists at risk: Syrian reporter Rifaie Tammas

In its new series, "Supporting journalists at risk," CPJ profiles journalists who have been in dire situations as a result of persecution for their work. CPJ's Journalist Assistance program has helped these journalists, and hundreds of others, through a combination of financial and non-financial assistance.

In this edition, CPJ recounts how 26-year-old Syrian Rifaie Tammas fled his country in 2013 following the threat of detention by the Syrian government. Today, Tammas has established a new life in Turkey.

Blog   |   Journalist Assistance, Syria

Supporting journalists at risk: Syrian reporter Zakwan Hadid

In its new series, "Supporting journalists at risk," CPJ profiles journalists who have been in dire situations as a result of persecution for their work. CPJ's Journalist Assistance program has helped these journalists, and hundreds of others, through a combination of financial and non-financial assistance.

In this edition, CPJ looks at Zakwan Hadid, a 29-year-old Syrian journalist from Idlib, who fled to Turkey after receiving death threats from militants and opposition groups in connection with his reporting. Today, Hadid works at a radio station in Istanbul.

Blog   |   Nicaragua

Reporters covering Nicaragua waterway project obstructed by lack of information

HKND Group chairman Wang Jing celebrates the start of work on Nicaragua's interoceanic waterway in December. Reporters say little information has been released on the $50 billion project. (AFP/STR)

When Nicaragua began preliminary work on an interoceanic waterway designed to handle ships too big for the Panama Canal, some of the foreign correspondents who had flown in to cover the December groundbreaking were left high and dry.

Blog   |   Internet, USA

In fight against extremism, press freedom must not be compromised

President Obama speaks at the summit to counter violent extremism in Washington, D.C. on February 19. (AFP/Brendan Smialowski)

In an effort to counter extremists and militant groups who use a mix of violence and social media to spread their message, a summit was held in Washington, D.C. this week to discuss how to counter violent extremism. While there is little denying that these groups must be tackled, an approach must be found that will not justify restricting the press.

Blog   |   Iraq, Security, USA

Video: Bob Simon recounts 1991 capture in Iraq

When I heard the news last week that Bob Simon had died, I immediately thought back to an interview I had done with him in 2010. It was at an event called the "Courage Forum.," an ideas festival which took place the Museum of Modern Art hosted in New York City. It featured speakers who had demonstrated courage in various walks of life, among them tight rope artist Philippe Petit.

February 20, 2015 1:10 PM ET

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Blog   |   Russia

In Russia, media regulator uses warnings to restrict the press

In January, Russia's state media regulator Roskomnadzor issued warnings to six news outlets that published cartoons from French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo. Roskomnadzor said the cartoons were "insulting the religious feelings of Muslims and inciting religious hatred," and that the outlets had broken laws on media and extremism, Russian news agency Tass reported.

Blog   |   Internet

CPJ calls on U.N. to protect use of encryption for journalists

For journalists to work safely they must be able to protect themselves and their sources, which is why encryption is such a vital tool. On February 10, the Committee to Protect Journalists and the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press submitted a joint letter to the U.N. urging it to ensure that long-standing freedom of expression and privacy principles also protect reporters' use of encryption and anonymity-protecting technologies.

February 18, 2015 5:47 PM ET

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Blog   |   Syria

CPJ joins call for Syria to release three press freedom defenders from jail

Three years ago Syrian Air Force Intelligence agents raided the office of the Syrian Center for Media and Freedom of Expression in Damascus, arresting all who were present. While some of those arrested were later released, Mazen Darwish, Hani al-Zitani, and Hussein Ghrer have been imprisoned ever since.

Blog   |   Egypt

Mission Journal: In Egypt, glimmer of hope in bleak press environment

Mohamed Fahmy holds an Egyptian flag on February 12 after a court ruled he and Al-Jazeera colleague Baher Mohamed could be released on bail. (AP/Hassan Ammar)

After a series of high-level meetings to discuss press freedom concerns with Egyptian officials in Cairo this week, it was heartening to hear that journalists Mohamed Fadel Fahmy and Baher Mohamed had been granted bail after more than 400 days in prison.

Blog   |   Security

A first step toward better safety for freelancers

Tanya Bindra, left, and Joey Daoud administer care to a training dummy during a battlefield medical response training workshop for freelance journalists provided by Reporters Instructed in Saving Colleagues (RISC) in New York. (AP/RISC, James Lawler Duggan)

The murders of freelancers James Foley and Steven Sotloff last year put the news industry on the spot. What could news executives, press freedom groups, and individual journalists do to improve safety? The issue was not new. International news organizations had been grappling with their responsibility towards freelancers and locally hired media workers for years. Several had begun treating freelancers as they would their own staffers when it came to safety. Freelancers too had joined together under the Frontline Freelance Register to demonstrate that they were professionals and should be treated and compensated as such.

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