Page last updated at 00:01 GMT, Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Journalist deaths 'reach record level' in 2009

Relatives and members of media organisations commemorate the massacre in Ampatuan town, Maguindanao province on January 23, 2010
Thirty-one journalists were killed in the Philippines' Maguindanao massacre

Seventy journalists were killed in 2009, making it the worst year since records began 30 years ago, the Committee to Protect Journalists says.

A massacre of 31 journalists in the Philippines and other deaths took the total past the 2007 record of 67.

Some 150 journalists are currently in jail, including 23 in Iran where the CJP says the authorities have in effect criminalised journalism.

The group said online journalists were particularly vulnerable to repression.

According to its report, Attacks on the Press 2009, online reporters made up more than half of the news workers in prison worldwide.

As in the previous 10 years, China remained the world's worst jailer of journalists - with 24 being held.

China was followed by Iran, Cuba, Eritrea and Burma.

Speaking at a news conference at the UN, CPJ officials said international pressure was still the most effective way to combat both government repression and impunity for non-state players who attacked journalists, the BBC's Barbara Plett reports from the United Nations headquarters in New York.

The growth of new media - such as blogs and social networking sites - had created new opportunities to fight repression and censorship, they said.

But CPJ officials warned that states like China and Tunisia can sabotage such technologies and turn them against journalists.

It noted in particular that Tehran was using online social networks to go after dissidents and reporters.

"Creating vibrant and secure global media requires new strategic thinking to bring killers to justice, to reduce the number of journalists in jail, and to support reporters working in exile or in repressive environments," CPJ executive director Joel Simon wrote in the report's introduction.

Philippines killing witness talks
13 Jan 10 |  Asia-Pacific
Yemen charges missing journalist
09 Feb 10 |  Middle East
UK 'must investigate Afghan raid'
05 Nov 09 |  South Asia
Reporter Saberi leaves Iran jail
11 May 09 |  Middle East

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2018 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific