Press Group: Afghan Deaths Bring Journalists Toll to 53 in 2001
A total of 53 journalists and media workers have died this year, including eight in the recent anti-terror military action in Afghanistan alone, the International Press Institute (IPI) said Friday.
The death toll, which compares to 56 for the whole of last year, includes 10 in Colombia and three each in the Palestinian territories and the Philippines. Newsmen were also killed in 23 other countries.
"The killing of eight journalists in Afghanistan within a period of only 17 days has intensified the ongoing effort to reduce the risks of journalists
reporting on conflicts," said the Vienna-based IPI.
Around the world, the Americas was the again most dangerous region overall, with at least 20 journalists killed, said the IPI, which issues an annual death toll figure as well as updates after particular incidents.
In Asia, 15 journalists were murdered, while the death toll in Europe was 11, notably in Spain, Northern Ireland and the French Mediterranean island of Corsica.
In the Middle East, four journalists were killed including three in the
Palestinian Territories, while "only" three were killed in Africa, down from nine in 2000 and 19 in 1999, said an IPI statement.
"There is always the danger of accidental death or of being caught in the cross-fire when covering conflicts, but even well-trained and experienced journalists will continue to die as long as soldiers, paramilitaries, terrorists, bandits and other groups believe they can kill journalists with impunity," said IPI head Johann P. Fritz.
"The failure of governments to give priority to finding and prosecuting those responsible for the killing of journalists is one of IPI's major concerns," he added -- VIENNA, Nov 30 (AFP)
© 2001 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)