Monday, October 4, 2010

Journalists killed


According to the last annual report released by Reporters Without Borders, 76 journalists were murdered in 2009. This number of casualties includes only those cases in which the NGO has clearly established that the victim was killed because of his/her professional activity as a journalist. It is definitely a bad year, but not worse: in 2008 the number of journalists killed amounted to 60 and in 2007, the worst year in this decade, 86. Moreover, in 2009, 157 journalists were forced to leave their countries for fear of being attacked or imprisoned and 570 media were censured by governments. 
Except for Christian Poveda, a French-Spanish journalist who was shot dead in El Salvador, the rest of journalists have been killed in their own country. The main reason for murder is always the same: wars and elections. The list of the most dangerous places is also ranked by the same countries over the years (the Caucasus, the Gaza Strip, Somalia and Mexico), although in 2009 the Philippines ranks number one because in just one day, on November 23rd, more than 30 journalists were killed in Maguindanao, on the island of Mindanao, in the south of the Philippines. About fifty armed men, including two policemen and the mayor, who is the local governor’s son, attacked a convoy of vehicles carrying supporters of Esmael Mangudadatu’s candidacy, main opponent to the governor. There were 57 to 64 people killed, including 30 journalists (or 34, depending on the sources), Mangudadatu's wife, his two sisters and even some witnesses driving other vehicles. 

Sources:
  1. Reporters Without Borders website: http://en.rsf.org/
  2. 2008 Annual Report released by Reporters Without Borders: http://en.rsf.org/IMG/pdf/rapport_en-2.pdf
  3. The English version of the annual report 2009 is not available yet, but you can check the Spanish version: http://files.reporterossinfronteras.webnode.es/200000189-ea364eb304/INFORME_2009_CASTELLANO.pdf
  4. Christian Poveda obituary:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/2009/sep/06/christian-poveda-obituary
  5. About Maguindanao massacre:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maguindanao_massacre
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