Though there is a growing recognition of the threats to media freedom, journalists and filmmakers are increasingly under pressure to report against the backdrop of restrictions, imprisonment and violence.
Al Jazeera journalist Mahmoud Hussein was arrested and jailed in Egypt 2 years ago.
Whether you’re a freelance reporter, a large broadcaster or a small media organisation, media freedom is now a common threat. It is a challenge that must be addressed at all levels – from governments and global media organisations to individual freelance reporters.
Today, on Tuesday 5th November, One World Media hosted a private media event in partnership with Al Jazeera, bringing together the industry’s decision makers, experts and respected journalists to discuss the ways that media organisations can stand together to protect media freedom.
During the discussion we heard from a number of journalists who have experienced the increasing threat to media freedom first hand. From Paul Caruana Galizia, whose mother Daphne Caruana Galizia, was assassinated in a car-bomb attack in 2017 after repeatedly uncovering government corruption, to Abdullah Al Najjar, who detailed the unlawful imprisonment of Al Jazeera journalist Mahmoud Hussein who has been detained without any formal charges in Egypt for over 1,000 days. The examples highlighted the true and immediate threat that is present all over the world.
Reporters Without Borders’ UK Bureau Director, Rebecca Vincent led the discussion, commenting that last year was the deadliest on record for journalists. Over 1000 journalists have been killed in the last 10 years, and 400 are still imprisoned worldwide.
With limited protection and ever more hostile reporting environments, journalists are increasingly forced to report against the backdrop of imprisonment and violence, or not at all.
Journalism is crucial to holding power to account. Independent media acts as society’s watchdogs. So as budgets are squeezed and resources tightened, it is vital that we stand together in collaboration and support. We must demand more action from governments, educate the public on the importance of an independent and free media, and urge media organisations all over the world to amplify their coverage of crimes against journalists.
At One World Media we will continue to show our support by providing a space to discuss and debate these issues, to come together in the fight to defend media freedom, and to champion those whose work brings to light underreported stories.
To find out more about some of the campaigns and organisations discussed at today’s event, please explore the links below: