Declaration by the High Representative on behalf of the EU on the occasion of the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists – 2nd November 2019

October 31, 2019
Share on

Freedom of expression, in all its forms, is the very essence of democracy. Only with a thriving, free and independent media landscape, we can hold governments, businesses and society at large accountable. And precisely for this fundamental right, far too often, journalists and media workers are attacked, persecuted, harassed, or intimidated for carrying out their work. Most journalists are not wounded in the heat of war coverage, but suffer violence in our immediate surroundings.

In 2018 alone, 94 journalists and media staff were killed in work-related incidents as reported by the International Federation of Journalists. Hundreds more have been subjected to arbitrary arrest or detention without ever having been tried in a court.

The EU provides support and legal assistance via the EU-funded mechanism for Human Rights Defenders, a network that delivers fast response to human rights defenders under threat, including journalists. The EU also funds the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF) and its important Media Pluralism Monitor that continues to measure threats to media pluralism in the EU and in neighbouring countries and informs our policy-making processes.

In 2019, the European Commission committed a budget of €2.2 million to support ECPMF projects geared at promoting quality journalism, and cross-border cooperation between media professionals and self-regulatory bodies. In many countries, we provide financial and expert support to foster protection of journalists, bloggers and media workers.

Read more

Full statement

Countries covered:

  • Algeria
  • Egypt
  • Israel
  • Jordan
  • Lebanon
  • Libya
  • Morocco
  • Palestine *
  • Syria *
  • Tunisia
Human Rights