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8 Dec 2006
Brussels, 8 December -- The International News Safety Institute today welcomed a move by the UN Security Council to provide greater protection to journalists and other news media staff in conflict zones.
French UN Ambassador Jean-Marc de la Sabliere, who introduced a resolution on journalist safety on 5 December on behalf of France, Britain, Denmark, Greece and Slovakia, said it was "very important" that journalists can do their job independently and freely and are not attacked.
The measure would condemn all attacks targeting journalists, media professionals and associated personnel covering armed conflicts or otherwise caught up in war. It would urge governments "and all other parties to an armed conflict" to do all they can to prevent crimes against journalists, investigate any crimes that occur and bring the perpetrators to justice.
"Almost 1,000 journalists and other news media staff have died trying to cover dangerous stories around the world over the past 10 years," said INSI Director Rodney Pinder.
"Most are murdered and few of the perpetrators ever face justice. Press freedom, a cornerstone of democracy, is not possible wherever journalists are killed trying to do their job.
"I hope and trust this resolution will be passed by the Security Council and that all those who have a responsibility for the lives of journalists will take it to heart."
Concerned by the rising number of news media deaths around the globe, INSI, the International Federation of Journalists and the European Broadcasting Union joined forces more than a year ago to push for the adoption of such a resolution by the Security Council.
"It is extremely heartening that major nations have now taken up the campaign," Pinder said. "We thank them and wish them all speed in securing passage of the resolution."
Ambassador de la Sabliere said he hoped the 15-nation Security Council would act swiftly to approve the text.
Details of all deadly incidents for 2006 and previous years can be found on our website http://www.newssafety.com/casualties/index.htm
Any questions about this news release should be addressed to Rodney Pinder firstname.lastname@example.org or mobile +44 7734 709 267