CPJ Blog

Press Freedom News and Views

Gypsy Guillén Kaiser

Gypsy Guillén Kaiser is CPJ’s advocacy and communications director. Born in the Dominican Republic and raised in New York, she began her career as a journalist after graduating from New York University.

Blog   |   Somalia

Only due process, transparency will end Somali impunity

Last week, as Egypt plunged deeper into political violence, CPJ recorded a sad statistic: the death of the 1,000th journalist in the line of duty since we began keeping records in 1992. While that benchmark death came amid a military raid, seven out of 10 killed journalists were in fact murdered in reprisal for their work-- and the killers have evaded justice in almost all of those cases, our research shows. 

August 19, 2013 7:13 PM ET

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Blog   |   Pakistan, UK

In London, echoes of Pakistan's deadly press policies

Among the more 200,000 Pakistanis living in London is Altaf Hussain, leader of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement. This powerful political party is widely thought to be behind the murder of reporter Wali Khan Babar, a rising star at Geo TV who was shot dead in Karachi in 2011. His coverage focused on politically sensitive topics such as extortion, targeted killings, electricity thefts, land-grabbing, and riots.

Blog   |   Venezuela

Attacks on press in Venezuela expand online

Chávez' Twitter page. (AFP/Juan Barreto)

Online penetration in Venezuela has increased in recent years, with 40 percent of its population online, according to the International Telecommunication Union. A significant amount of activity takes place on Twitter, where Venezuela has the highest penetration in the region after Uruguay, according to local research company Tendencias Digitales. President Hugo Chávez Frías, who has more than three million followers on Twitter, uses the platform regularly to convey official news--as he did on Tuesday when a raging fire at an oil refinery was extinguished, leaving 48 people dead, according to a report on EFE.

Blog   |   USA

Dan Rather feted for career, support for press freedom

Gwen Ifill, right, interviewed Dan Rather about the role of information in a free society and the state of
American journalism. (Jeremy Bigwood)

As he exited his car and entered the performance center, the man in the dark pinstriped suit caught the attention of a few people, who trailed after him. The small crowd greeted him respectfully and enthusiastically, as someone they felt they had known all their lives. In return he shook hands calmly and asked the names of his greeters. He was veteran television news anchor and reporter Dan Rather.

Rather is this year's recipient of the Committee to Protect Journalists' Burton Benjamin Memorial Award for lifetime achievement in defending press freedom. At an event Thursday commemorating CPJ's three decades of battling for free expression, at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., Rather was interviewed by PBS's Gwen Ifill, where he discussed today's challenges to independent journalism as well as his own career.

Blog   |   Iran

When a defender is persecuted, what rights are left?

Everyone at some point has needed someone to stand up for them. These people shine in our memories for gestures or actions taken on our behalf, whether as children against the schoolyard bully or as adults in favor of a scholarly proposition or professional advance. But an especially powerful embodiment of an advocate is that of an attorney who uses the law, even where individuals have few rights, to argue for the freedom or survival of those who are oppressed. Nasrin Sotoudeh is such an advocate, and on April 26 her courage, determination, and professionalism as a writer, lawyer, and human rights activist in Iran will be honored with the PEN/Barbara Goldsmith Freedom to Write Award. Sotoudeh, who has served as legal counsel for several journalists imprisoned in Iran, was sentenced in January to 11 years in prison. 

April 15, 2011 2:03 PM ET

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Blog   |   CPJ

CPJ at 30: Celebrating the struggle

CPJ founders and board members along with supporters and friends filed into Columbia University's Italian Academy on Thursday for a series of events to mark the 30 years of CPJ's existence. The celebration started with a 20-minute sneak peek at a feature-length documentary about CPJ that will be released later this year. 

March 9, 2011 4:12 PM ET

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Thirty years on, CPJ gathers lessons and looks forward

British journalists Ian Mather, Tony Prime, and Simon Winchester in an Argentine police station after their arrest during the Falklands War in 1982. The three were one of CPJ's first cases. (Simon Winchester)

Journalists rarely report on themselves. But in 1981, when two of them heard about a Paraguayan reporter who had been arrested and was facing a potential prison term simply for reporting the news, they were convinced that it was time to act. It was this desire to help a colleague under threat that was the seed that spawned the Committee to Protect Journalists. Since then, CPJ has grown to a fully staffed organization advocating globally for press freedom.

March 1, 2011 11:25 AM ET

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Blog   |   Iran

Stand up for Iranian journalists and sign CPJ's petition

Mohammad Davari (RAHANA)

Just before a new round of nuclear talks with Iran began on December 6, the German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung interviewed a high-ranking Iranian official who indicated that two German journalists detained in Iran would possibly be allowed to spend the Christmas holiday with their families at the German Embassy.

December 10, 2010 4:35 PM ET

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Blog   |   CPJ, Mexico

At PEN, CPJ event, Mexico press crisis examined

The line of people at the stairs leading down to the Great Hall at Cooper Union in lower Manhattan formed early and turned into an audience of 500. They came to hear prominent Mexican and U.S. writers and free expression advocates assess, denounce, and seek solutions to the wave of violence wracking Mexican media.

October 21, 2010 12:50 PM ET

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Blog   |   CPJ, Mexico

PEN, CPJ call attention to Mexico press crisis

"Tell them not to kill me!" pleads a man in the opening lines of a fascinating tale of violence with the same title by one of Mexico's most esteemed writers, Juan Rulfo. It is, sadly, the same cry for help that Mexican journalists are sending out to the world today. On Tuesday, October 19, prominent writers and journalists from Mexico and the United States will gather in New York for "State of Emergency: Censorship by Bullet in Mexico," an evening of readings and discussions about the threats facing members of the Mexican press who report on drug-related violence.

October 14, 2010 3:30 PM ET

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