Tag Archives: International Federation of Journalists

[In the news] 13 Pinoys among 126 journalists who died on the job – News safety group. -GMAnews

13 Pinoys among 126 journalists who died on the job – News safety group.

GENEVA – A total of 126 journalists and other media workers around the world have died on the job this year, with Syria the most dangerous place to work for the second year in a row, the International News Safety Institute said on Friday.

gmanewsonline

That was 21 fewer than last year, but INSI said the incidence of kidnappings and disappearances was rising.

INSI, founded in 2003 by major world news organizations, including Reuters, and professional bodies like the Brussels-based International Federation of Journalists, said the Philippines and India were the next most dangerous countries for the media after Syria, with 13 dead each.

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[In the news] Media groups express concern over threats on Kidapawan journalist -MindaNews.com

Media groups express concern over threats on Kidapawan journalist
By Malu Cadelina-Manar , MindaNews.com
January 17, 2013

MindaNewsKIDAPAWAN CITY (MindaNews / 16 Jan) – The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has joined its affiliate, the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP), in expressing concern about reports of a threat against a journalist here.

Reports reaching NUJP said that a texter, who identified himself as a member of the Bagani, was tasked to “silence” Joy Francisco, publisher and editor-in-chief of Southern Voice Journal (SVJ), a weekly tabloid based in this city.

The text, using the mobile phone number 09214095902, was sent to two local radio reporters, one of them Abner Francisco, program director of Charm Radio and columnist of the SVJ, around 8:30 a.m. last Sunday.

When the reporters tried to call the sender, the phone was already out of reach.

It was not clear how the texter was able to get the personal numbers of the reporters.

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Human Rights Online Philippines does not hold copyright over these materials. Author/s and original source/s of information are retained including the URL contained within the tagline and byline of the articles, news information, photos etc.

[In the news] Int’l media group: Scrap contempt raps in massacre case – Interaksyon.com

Int’l media group: Scrap contempt raps in massacre case – Interaksyon.com.

MANILA, Philippines – An international media federation that represents more than 600,000 journalists in 131 countries urged the Court of Appeals on Tuesday to withdraw the indirect contempt case against an officer of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines and the widow of one of the media workers killed in the November 23, 2009 Ampatuan massacre.

International Federation of Journalists Asia-Pacific director Jacqueline Park, in a statement, said the group was “concerned that the allegations against Rowena Paraan and Monette Salaysay are being used to silence witnesses, advocates and families of victims of the massacre.”

Paraan is secretary general of the NUJP, the IFJ’s Philippine affiliate. Salaysay’s husband Napoleon was one of the 58 persons killed in what has been called the worst incident of electoral violence in recent Philippine history and the worst single attack on the press ever.

The two face jail terms and hefty fines if the CA finds them in contempt.

The appellate court has asked the two to explain why they should not be cited in contempt for allegedly foisting “bias and corruption upon members of the court.”

Both had voiced concern about the slow trial of those accused of the massacre and also why two of the justices did not inhibit themselves from hearing a petition from suspended Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao government Zaldy Ampatuan to have himself dropped from the list of accused, when they had done so during a similar petition filed earlier by Ampatuan’s father Andal Sr.

The two are among key members of the powerful Maguindanao political clan who are accused of planning and carrying out the massacre.

The IFJ noted that the concern voiced out by Paraan ans Salaysay “are shared by members of the House of Representatives in the Philippines, including House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr., who vowed on May 23, which marked a year and a half since the massacre, ‘not to forget and to do everything we can’ to help resolve the case.”

Park also cited a recent survey by the Social Weather Stations that found 51 percent of Filipinos saying the massacre trial and also noted growing criticism for how government is handling the situation.

“There is clearly broad public sentiment in the Philippines regarding a need to speed up the trials of the massacre suspects,” Park said. “The people of the Philippines have not forgotten that President Aquino made a public commitment before taking office that he would ensure justice is served in this case.”

The IFJ also urged “judicial and government officials to condemn any efforts to obstruct the speedy and fair trial of the massacre accused, and to ensure the focus of judicial actions remains on the conduct of the actual trials.”

Despite the contempt case, the NUJP has urged press freedom advocates and the victims’ families to “remain steadfast” in their quest for justice.

“More than ever, there is a need to remain vigilant on the conduct and proceedings of the [massacre] case amid continued reports of threats against the victims’ families and legal maneuvers of the accused,” the NUJP said in a statement.

“We will not be cowed into surrendering our right to free expression for we cannot afford to be silent as we monitor the progress of a case that is crucial … because its outcome may well determine whether we can continue to consider ourselves a democracy, a nation, a people,” it said.

The IFJ noted that it remained “unclear whether the petition against Paraan and Salaysay was based on a submission by lawyers defending massacre suspects, or initiated by the judiciary independently,” citing the fact that the citation against the two “is similar in tone to comments made by Zaldy Ampatuan in a newspaper advertisement published nationally on March 23. The advertisement alleged public comments were prejudicial to those accused of involvement in organizing and committing the massacre.”

Aside from Paraan and Salaysay, another contempt case has also been filed against private prosecutor Harry Roque for comments he made in a documentary film on the massacre.

[In the news] IFJ: Massacre case still moving slowly under Noy-The Daily Tribune – Without Fear or Favor

The Daily Tribune – Without Fear or Favor.

Source: Tribune.net.ph

International media groups are asking why despite the change in leadership, the Maguindanao massacre case is still moving at a snail’s pace.

International press freedom organiza-tions, thus, called on President Aquino to direct his administration to provide the necessary resources and support to ensure the swift prosecution of suspects accused of murdering journalists and media workers in the celebrated case.

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) said it is already 500 days since the November 2009 massacre of 58 people, including 32 journalists and media workers, in Maguindanao.

Philippine and international organi-zations jointly expressed their outrage and deep concerns at the continuing delays in prosecuting key suspects in the massacre and other media killings in the Philippines, the IFJ said in a statement.

“The atrocity in Ampatuan Town, Maguindanao, on 23 November 2009 occurred in the context of a decades-long culture of impunity for violence against journalists and other human rights defenders in the Philippines,” the joint statement by the international partnership group said.

“President Aquino and his administration must show a firm commitment to end impunity by ensuring that perpetrators of violence against journalists are brought to justice,” it added.

Trials are under way for 52 defendants in the Maguindanao massacre. Among the total 195 charged, at least 83 suspects are in custody while more than 100 remain at large.

National and international journalists’ organizations and media groups are gravely concerned by alleged attempts to stall and subvert the judicial process, it said.

The IFJ identified such attempts as alleged offers of bribes to victims’ families, and intimidation and deadly violence against witnesses, according to research by the Committee to Protect Journalists.

One witness, known as Jesse, was killed in June 2010. A member of the Ampatuan family militia, whose leaders are among those accused of organising the massacre, Jesse was in the process of enrolling in the Justice Department’s witness protection program. He had given several press interviews detailing his role as one of the gunmen in the 2009 massacre.

Throughout 2010 and 2011, proceedings have been delayed as defense lawyers filed a series of motions, including efforts to remove the judge and prosecutors. The delays have added to the financial strain on witnesses and family members attending the hearings.

Further, prime suspect Zaldy Ampatuan has filed for a judicial review in the Philippine Court of Appeals. If the review favors him, Ampatuan will be removed from the list of accused, and released from detention in Manila, it said.

In March 2011, defense lawyers placed newspaper advertisements alleging that journalists’ organisations are hindering a fair trial for Zaldy Ampatuan by attempting to influence the court’s decision.

Meanwhile, Philippine advocates and international experts have raised concerns that prosecution of the case is hindered by flawed forensic work and lack of cooperation among law enforcement officials.

Reports that some accused are enjoying special privileges while in detention are also extremely disturbing.

The international partners urge the Aquino administration to provide all necessary resources and support to assist the Quezon City regional trial court, which has been assigned the Ampatuan Town massacre proceedings, to conduct hearings fairly and swiftly.

The IFJ said local groups representing journalists and media organisations have a right to freely express their concerns about the conduct of the case.