New York, September 26, 2013--Four journalists who face imprisonment or other persecution for exposing realities in Ecuador, Egypt, Turkey, and Vietnam will be honored with the Committee to Protect Journalists' 2013 International Press Freedom Awards, an annual recognition of the courageous reporting that defines free media.
"At a time when information has become a global resource, these four journalists have defied censorship and persecution to bring us the news," said CPJ Executive Director Joel Simon. "We recognize their bravery, their commitment, and their refusal to be silenced."
The awardees--Janet Hinostroza (Teleamazonas, Ecuador), Bassem Youssef (Capital Broadcast Center, Egypt), Nedim Şener (Posta, Turkey) and Nguyen Van Hai (Dieu Cay, Vietnam)--are confronting severe reprisals for their work, including legal harassment, physical threats, and imprisonment. Hinostroza was forced to temporarily give up one television program to ensure her safety after being threatened; Youssef has come under legal investigation for his satirical newscast; and Şener is charged with terrorist activity for his critical reporting and could be sentenced to 15 years in prison. Nguyen Van Hai, one of Vietnam's best known bloggers, created an independent alternative in a country where all news publications are controlled by the government. Consequently, he is serving a 12-year prison sentence under a vague law that bars "conducting propaganda" against the state.
CPJ will present Paul Steiger, founding editor-in-chief of ProPublica, with the Burton Benjamin Memorial Award for lifetime achievement in the cause of press freedom. Steiger, who served as CPJ chairman for six years, from 2005 to 2011, was managing editor of The Wall Street Journal from 1991 to 2007.
"Paul Steiger's many achievements demonstrate his abiding commitment to the need for a free and probing press. He led The Wall Street Journal through its greatest trials, including the capture and killing of reporter Daniel Pearl and the weeks following 9/11, and to its greatest achievements," said CPJ Chairman Sandra Mims Rowe. "At a time when most people would retire, he founded ProPublica, another example of journalistic excellence and public service in investigative reporting. We commend his dedication to the cause of press freedom throughout his 45-year career."
All of the winners will be honored at CPJ's annual award and benefit dinner in New York City on November 26, 2013. Lara Logan, CBS News correspondent and CPJ board member, will host the event. Daniel L. Doctoroff, chief executive and president of Bloomberg L.P., is the dinner chairman.
CPJ is an independent, nonprofit organization that works to safeguard press freedom worldwide.
Note to editors: CPJ International Press Freedom Award winners are available for interviews prior to the awards dinner on November 26, 2013. For full biographies, click here. Media accreditation for coverage of the awards dinner will begin on October 22. To purchase tickets to the dinner, please call +1.212.300.9002.
Media contact: Magnus Ag, Advocacy and Communications Officer; email: [email protected]; tel: +1.212.300.9007