Today is World Press Freedom Day

Today is World Press Freedom Day. 8 journalists and 4 media assistants were killed since 1 January 2021.

This year’s World Press Freedom Day theme “Information as a Public Good” serves as a call to affirm the importance of cherishing information as a public good, and exploring what can be done in the production, distribution and reception of content to strengthen journalism, and to advance transparency and empowerment while leaving no one behind.

The theme is of urgent relevance to all countries across the world. It recognizes the changing communications system that is impacting on our health, our human rights, democracies and sustainable development.

8 journalists and 4 media assistants were killed since 1 January 2021. The latest victims have been two Basque journalists. War reporter David Beriain and cameraman Roberto Fraile were killed when the government convoy they were accompanying was attacked yesterday morning on the road leading to the Pama national park in the east of the country.

3 May acts as a reminder to governments of the need to respect their commitment to press freedom and is also a day of reflection among media professionals about issues of press freedom and professional ethics. Just as importantly, World Press Freedom Day is a day of support for media which are targets for the restraint, or abolition, of press freedom. It is also a day of remembrance for those journalists who lost their lives in the pursuit of a story.

Turkey is on position 153 out of 180 countries. As Reporters Without Borders blantly puts it: “All means possible are used to eliminate pluralism.In this “New Turkey” marked by Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s hyper-presidency, one in which arbitrary decisions by magistrates and government agencies are the new normal, Internet censorship has reached unprecedented levels. Questioning the authorities and the privileged is now almost impossible. If international social media platforms fail to appoint a legal representative in Turkey and apply the censorship decisions taken by Turkey’s courts, they are exposed to an escalating range of sanctions that include fines, withdrawal of advertising and reduction in the bandwidth available to them.”