Katherine Jacobsen, CPJ’s U.S., Canada and Caribbean program coordinator, accepts the Canadian Association of Journalists’ 2024 Charles Bury Award at the ceremony in Toronto on June 1, 2024. (Konnor Killoran/Canadian Association of Journalists)

CPJ hailed as a ‘Red Cross for journalism’

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On Saturday, CPJ was awarded the Canadian Association of Journalists’ (CAJ) 2024 Charles Bury Award for commitment to protecting the safety and security of journalists at risk worldwide.

“For decades, the CPJ has saved countless lives of journalists while simultaneously shining a bright light on the many draconian abuses to press freedom around the world,” said CAJ president Brent Jolly at the association’s annual awards ceremony at Toronto’s Reference Library.

CAJ specifically highlighted CPJ’s impact supporting journalists in Gaza, Ukraine, Mexico, Russia, the Philippines, and Canada.

“This is not just an acknowledgement of the work that my colleagues at the Committee to Protect Journalists undertake but a tribute to the countless journalists who risk their lives every day to shed light on the most critical stories of our time, keeping the public informed while holding authorities to account,” said Katherine Jacobsen, CPJ’s U.S., Canada and Caribbean program coordinator upon acceptance of the award.

Read more about the Canadian Association of Journalists’ 2024 awards.

Global press freedom updates

  • Shooters attack three Pakistani journalists in two separate incidents
  • CPJ urges investigation into killing of Sudanese journalist Muawiya Abdel Razek, 3 family members after RSF raid
  • In Nigeria, 2 ICIR journalists summoned, questioned over corruption report
  • CPJ calls for immediate release of Sudanese journalist Tariq Abdallah
  • CPJ calls on Lesotho not to treat reporting on banned music groups as criminal offense
  • Russia extends detention of journalist Alsu Kurmasheva for 2 months
  • Russian authorities prosecute, fine Meduza journalists
  • Pro-government newspaper publisher attacks journalist Vuk Cvijić over investigative report
  • Broadcast bill passed by Uruguay Senate threatens press freedom


Cristina Zahar (center), CPJ’s Latin America program coordinator, alongside Brazilian Coalition for the Defense of Journalism (Antonio Cruz/Agência Brasil)

On Wednesday, Cristina Zahar, CPJ’s Latin America program coordinator, participated in a press conference to commemorate the second anniversary of the killings of journalist Dom Phillips and Indigenous issues expert Bruno Pereira in Brasilia.

Phillips and Pereira were brutally murdered during a trip to the Javari Valley, in the Brazilian Amazon.

The event was organized by the Brazilian Coalition for the Defense of Journalism, of which CPJ is a member, along with Pedro Vaca, the special rapporteur for freedom of expression of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), and representatives from RSF, Article 19, Abraji and Instituto Vladimir Herzog.

“Impunity in the case of Dom and Bruno is part of a larger scenario of impunity for crimes against journalists, not just in Brazil,” Zahar stated. According to CPJ’s 2023 Global Impunity Index, “Brazil ranks 10th on the list of countries with the most impunity, along with Syria, Somalia, Haiti, and Mexico, which is considered the most dangerous country for journalists in the Western Hemisphere.”

The Brazilian coalition highlighted the delay in bringing those responsible for Phillips and Pereira’s deaths to justice and the lack of transparency in the Colombian investigation, which is being conducted in secret.

Three suspects—the brothers Amarildo and Oseney da Costa Oliveira, and Jefferson da Silva Lima, all accused of illegal fishing in the Javari Valley Indigenous Territory—were arrested in June 2022 but are yet to be tried. The alleged mastermind, Rubén Dario da Silva Villar, alias Colombia, is imprisoned for other crimes.

Watch the press conference.

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