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For Immediate Release
26 June 1996

Avner Gidron
Phone: (212) 465-1004

CPJ Condemns Assassination of Leading Irish Journalist Veronica Guerin

Urges Irish Government to Take Immediate Action

The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns the assassination in Dublin on Wednesday of Veronica Guerin, Ireland's leading investigative reporter.

"We would like to express our sense of profound sadness and outrage at the death of our friend and colleague Veronica Guerin," said CPJ's Executive Director William A. Orme, Jr. "We extend our deepest sympathies to her family, and call on the Irish government to take immediate action to bring Veronica's murderers to justice."

Veronica Guerin (right) with Tom Brokaw (NBC News) and Lesley Stahl (CBS News) after receiving the International Press Freedom Award in December 1996.

In New York last December, Guerin, who was the crime reporter for the Sunday Independent, received CPJ's International Press Freedom Award for her courage in reporting on Ireland's criminal underworld despite numerous death threats and assassination attempts against her. After one such attack--a masked intruder broke into her home in January 1995 and shot her a day after the Independent ran her profile of the suspected mastermind behind the largest robbery in Ireland's history--Guerin wrote of the experience and vowed to carry on her work. "In deciding to continue ... I am simply doing my job," she said. "I am letting the public know exactly how this society operates."

"Veronica Guerin's assassination is a chilling reminder that threats to a free press exist even in nations that are not struggling with political tyranny or civil conflict," Orme said. "Veronica's courage and persistence should serve to remind us all of the profound respect owed journalists around the world who risk their lives to report the truth."

CPJ is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that monitors attacks against the press and promotes press freedo m around the world.

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