International News Safety Institute update: May 2012
May 16, 2012 Leave a comment
By Hannah Storm
At the International News Safety Institute, we have just marked nine years since our launch. As we look ahead to our 10th year, we will be providing regular brief updates to help inform you of the work we’re doing at INSI, and allow you to continue with your much valued support at a time when the need for improved safety for journalists is greater than it’s ever been.
So far this year, 54 journalists and media staff have died doing their jobs, and we are aware of a further 19 who have died or been killed where we are trying to ascertain if their deaths were related to their work. At this time last year, 38 journalists and news media staff had died doing their jobs.
It’s a painful reminder of the risks many take to do their jobs and perhaps more potent because so many of those casualties came in a month that marked World Press Freedom Day (May 3rd). For us at INSI, without improved safety for journalists there can be no press freedom.
And so we were working across the world this month, marking World Press Freedom Day with a series of events to try and highlight that very point.
INSI participated in a workshop organised by the European Broadcast Union about press freedom and safety in Azerbaijan, which will shortly be hosting the Eurovision Song Contest.
We were then invited to Norway by the Fritt Ord Organisation to give a talk about “No Woman’s Land – On the Frontlines with Female Reporters” as part of a discussion about the safety of women journalists to mark World Press Freedom Day.
Separately, we attended a WPFD event in Tunis, organised by UNESCO and IREX, amongst others – providing training for dozens of journalists, from countries including Liberia, Argentina, Zimbabwe and Iraq . It was the first time that we’ve combined safety training and attendance at events to mark this important day and it was extremely successful.
We attended an event at the Frontline Club in London, taking part in a discussion with several dozen media practitioners and experts to share experiences and information about the current safety environment and we look forward to building on those discussions further in our work.
Finally, we have launched INSI’s blog to coincide with the start of our 10th year. We’ve already signed up a number of guest bloggers who are expert in the field of media safety, but please do get in touch if you’d like to contribute.