The now infamous incident of
Iraqi journalist Muntadhar al-Zaidi throwing his shoes at President George Bush
became primetime news throughout the world. In the
A previous entry on the CPJ blog stated that the incident is not a press freedom case, but expressed concern regarding the reported--though unconfirmed--mistreatment of al-Zaidi after he was detained.
As expected, many government
officials, state-owned news agencies, and government-aligned organizations in
One can't help but wonder why similar statements of solidarity are rarely issued when local journalists are harassed, imprisoned, or worse.
For instance, press freedom
Aisha al-Qaddafi, daughter of Libyan leader Muammar al-Qaddafi, announced on Monday that a government-aligned charitable organization which she directs will present a "Medal of Bravery" to al-Zaidi. "It was a means for journalist al-Zaidi to say 'No! No to violations of human rights,' " said a statement released by her organization.
On June 2, 2005, the body of freelance journalist Daif
al-Ghazal al-Shuhaibi was found in Benghazi, about 620 miles east of
In just the last week, the
Tunisian, Saudi Arabian, and Syrian governments prevented journalists,
bloggers, and human rights activists from their respective countries from
Governments in the region might look homeward when considering the rights of journalists.
UPDATE: Paragraph seven has been updated to include a reported conviction in the death of Daif al-Ghazal al-Shuhaibi, and that human rights groups remain skeptical as to whether justice has been served in the case.