More than 1000 journalists were killed and less than one case out of nine judicially solved. Freedom of information is essential to reach the sustainable development goals.
This message from Moez Chakchouk, UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Communication and Information, was sent to Ossigeno per l’Informazione on the occasion of the Concert for Press Freedom that was held in Rome on 21 June 2018 at the House of Jazz in Roma as part of the European Musica Day, to be read during the event.
UNESCO welcomes efforts by all actors involved in the protection of freedom of expression and of the safety of journalists. With more than 1,009 journalists killed from 2006 to 2017 according to UNESCO data, and less than one case out of nine judicially solved, the level of impunity for crimes against journalists remains terribly high.
This extremely high level of impunity imposes a climate of fear in many parts of the world, not only for media professionals but also for the whole society, which is detrimental to the free circulation of information and the expression of opinions and ideas for all citizens.
Fostering efforts to protect freedom of expression and journalists’ safety at national, regional and international levels, and reinforcing the capacities of action of those responsible for addressing this issue, should remain a global priority. Indeed, impunity for crimes against journalists, and for the countless other forms of violence against them, is hindering the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals and in particular SGD 16, which strives to promote peaceful and inclusive societies.”
Mr Moez Chakchouk UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Communication and Information