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Georgia

2008

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New York, December 18, 2008—For the sixth consecutive year, Iraq was the deadliest country in the world for the press, the Committee to Protect Journalists found in its end-of-year analysis. The 11 deaths recorded in Iraq in 2008, while a sharp drop from prior years, remained among the highest annual tolls in CPJ history.

New York, September 9, 2008The Committee to Protect Journalists welcomes today’s release of Telewizja Polska (TVP) crew members who were detained outside the Georgian village of Karaleti by South Ossetian militia members, and taken into custody in the regional capital, Tskhinvali on Monday.

Reporter Dariusz Bohatkiewicz told CPJ that authorities in Tskhinvali transferred him and his colleagues—cameraman Marcin Wesołowski and driver Levan Guliashvili—to Russian peacekeepers who turned them over to Georgian authorities and Polish diplomats. TVP crew’s equipment and car were returned undamaged.

New York, September 8, 2008—South Ossetian and Russian authorities should immediately release three members of a Polish television crew detained today near the village of Karaleti in the buffer zone between South Ossetia and Georgia, the Committee to Protect Journalists said. Authorities confiscated equipment and cell phones from the Telewizja Polska (TVP) crew and were holding the three members incommunicado in the regional capital, Tskhinvali, according to CPJ sources.

September 2008
News from the Committee to protect Journalists

Bob Dietz called attention to the Chinese propaganda department's recent 21-point press directive, first reported by the South China Morning Post in Hong Kong. The whole thing in English and Chinese is posted today at Berkeley's China Digital Times. Among the orders given to the domestic media during the Olympic Games is that they are not to report on the protest zones set up at three places around Beijing. This apparently holds true even if they are empty, which they are.

Journalists came under fire in their car on August 10 near Tskhinvali. According to the Turkish Daily News, Turkish journalist Recep Öztürk was wounded. It is not clear who was shooting at them--the lines have been fluid as the Georgians and Russians battle in South Ossetia. At least three journalists have been killed and 10 injured since fighting began last week.

We issued the following statement today in response to the attack on a Fox News crew in Gori, Georgia:

"We are troubled that despite the ceasefire, journalists and cameramen have come under fire once again. This is unacceptable and we call on all the parties in the conflict zone to ensure reporters' safety," CPJ Executive Director Joel Simon said. "This conflict has already taken the lives of three colleagues and left at least 10 wounded. Commanders must remind all deployed forces that journalists are civilians and entitled to the full protection of the Geneva Conventions."
Fox released video footage of reporter Steve Harrigan and his crew under fire.

New York, August 13, 2008--A veteran reporter with the Tel Aviv-based Hebrew-language daily Yedioth Ahronoth was severely injured on Tuesday in an attack in the central Georgian city of Gori. It was the same attack that killed Dutch cameraman Stan Storimans and injured his RTL Nieuws colleague Jeroen Akkermans.

At least three reporters have been killed covering the conflict in Georgia, and two others are reported missing. We are investigating reports today that journalists may have targeted at a press center in the city of Gori, which has been flattened in the Russian bombing campaign.

New York, August 12, 2008--Stan Storimans, a cameraman with Netherlands-based television channel RTL Nieuws, was killed today during bombing in the central Georgian city of Gori. His colleague, reporter Jeroen Akkermans, suffered shrapnel wounds to his leg and was hospitalized in a Tbilisi clinic, Jaspir Teijsse, a spokesman for RTL Nieuws, told CPJ Storimans was 39.

2008

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Killed in Georgia

8 journalists killed since 1992

1 journalist murdered

Contact

Europe and Central Asia

Program Coordinator:
Nina Ognianova

Research Associate:
Muzaffar Suleymanov

nognianova@cpj.org
msuleymanov@cpj.org

Tel: 212-465-1004
ext 106, 101
Fax: 212-465-9568

330 7th Avenue, 11th Floor
New York, NY, 10001 USA

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Blog: Nina Ognianova
Blog: Muzaffar Suleymanov