07 March 2007
News from the Media Scene:
Global Enquiry Into Journalist Killings Published

The International News Safety Institute (INSI) presents the dramatic results of the world’s most comprehensive inquiry into the deaths of journalists over the last decade in a report called Killing The Messenger: The Deadly Price of News.

The dramatic findings are accompanied by recommendations for radical action by the UN, individual Governments, international development institutions, the military, national security agencies and news organisations.

From the Foreword of the Report:
"The price of truth has gone up grievously. We pay every week with the life of a reporter, a cameraman, a support worker. Unless the life is that of a well-known Western correspondent, the world barely notices. Just four months after the horrific 2002 kidnapping and beheading of the Wall Street Journal’s Daniel Pearl, Tim Lopes of Globo TV suffered the identical fate without a similar outcry: he had been investigating drugs and under-age sex in a Rio de Janeiro slum.

The first shocking thing about this report is to learn just how many are dying. The International News Safety Institute, the originator of this collaborative inquiry, calculates that if we include all news media personnel - translators, fixers, office staff, drivers - no fewer than a thousand have died in the last ten years. The second shocking thing is to learn how many of them were murdered, most of them local beat reporters whose names do not resonate in the media. This is different from the sadly familiar fact that by-lined war correspondents, who knowingly risk their lives, get fatally caught in the crossfire of a battlefield, they walk on a landmine, they hitch a ride on a fated combat plane, they are mistaken for combatants. Every conflict claims its press victims. Kosovo, for instance, is thought of as a sanitized affair, an air campaign with mass briefings away from the action, yet at least 25 journalists and media workers were among the hundreds of civilian fatalities. Sixteen Serbs at the RTS television headquarters in Belgrade were killed by NATO bombing, as were three Chinese journalists at their embassy. Two German journalists from Stern were killed by snipers."

To read the full report, click on:

Killing The Messenger: The Deadly Price of News. - 1.2 Mb
Killing The Messenger: The Deadly Price of News.
(Document PDF, 1.2 Mb)