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Charlie Beckett

January 8th, 2007

UN agrees to condemn killing journalists

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Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

Charlie Beckett

January 8th, 2007

UN agrees to condemn killing journalists

0 comments

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

As those of you who followed our Killling Journalism event and report know, there has been a long campaign to get the United Nations to pass a resolution formally calling on all states to stop killing journalists. Finally, a motion of sorts has been passed, thanks to the hard work of a number of international journalism safety groups. On paper it doesn’t seem that remarkable. It says that during countries in conflict should treat journalists as civilians during wartime. These means they should be protected under the Geneva Convention.
But this is more than words. 167 journalists were killed last year as they went about their vital work of bearing witness to conflicts around the world. The Polis conference on Reporting War was told how armed forces of all types are increasingly treating the news media as combatants. As armies seek to gain a PR advantage or hide atrocities they increasingly resort to targetting the journalists. In a 24/7 live digital broadcast world, the news media can and does report conflict from the frontline in a way that can make the reporters part of the battlefield.
This resolution won’t stop any bullets. But it will make it possible to use the United Nations to hold to account those people who think they can win a war of words by killing journalists.

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Charlie Beckett

Posted In: International | Journalism | Research

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