James Ogogo

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Alerts   |   Sierra Leone

Two journalists killed by gunmen; two others wounded

Click here to read more about press freedom conditions in SIERRA LEONE

New York, May 24, 2000 --- The Committee to Protect Journalists is outraged by the latest murderous attack on journalists in Sierra Leone, which claimed the lives of two western journalists and left two others injured on Wednesday, according to news agencies and CPJ's sources in Freetown.

Attacks on the Press   |   Argentina, Australia, Colombia, East Timor, Indonesia, Kosovo, Lebanon, Macedonia, Nigeria, Russia, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, Turkey, Yugoslavia

Attacks on the Press 1999: 1999 Death Toll: Listed by Country

[Click here for full list of documented cases]

At its most fundamental level, the job of a journalist is to bear witness. In 1999, journalists in Sierra Leone witnessed rebels' atrocities against civilians in the streets of Freetown. In the Balkans, journalists watched ethnic Albanians fleeing the deadly menace of Serbian police and paramilitaries. In Indonesia, they recorded the violence of Indonesian-backed militias against supporters of political independence. Some who wrote about what they witnessed ended up dying because of the stories they told.

Attacks on the Press   |   Sierra Leone

Attacks on the Press 1999: Sierra Leone

In 1999, Sierra Leone became the world's most dangerous country for journalists, with a total of 10 journalists killed in the line of duty. (See Special Report on Sierra Leone) The combined rebel forces of the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) and the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC) viewed all journalists as "enemies." During a bloody three-week occupation of the capital, Freetown, in January, rebel forces executed at least eight journalists, some together with their families, before being ousted by the Nigerian- led West African peacekeeping force (ECOMOG).

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