CPJ's high-level advocacy has helped win the early release of imprisoned journalists, secure convictions in journalist murders, and enable positive legal reform in countries where the climate for free expression has deteriorated. All journalists should be able to report freely without any fear of harassment or retaliation. We will persevere in our fight to defend freedom of the press.
Note to our readers: CPJ plans to intensify our documentation of press freedom violations in the United States, following the election on November 8, 2016, of Donald Trump as president. During his campaign, Trump verbally attacked journalists, restricted access, threatened lawsuits, and promised to make legal action against the media easier under his administration.
We will have more details in next month's edition.
Next stop for exhibit of Shawkan's work: Photoville
In mid-September, CPJ partnered with the Bronx Documentary Center to hold an exhibition of photographs taken by Mahmoud Abou Zeid, or Shawkan, a freelance journalist who has been imprisoned in Egypt since August 2013. Many of Shawkan's photos--from protests and celebrations in Tahrir Square to daily life in Cairo--were taken during the Egyptian revolution.
IOC creates mechanism for journalist complaints after CPJ consultation
In early August, we welcomed the creation of a press freedom complaints mechanism by the International Olympic Committee. The move followed years of advocacy with the IOC by CPJ and other rights groups to do more to hold governments that host the Olympic Games accountable for press freedom abuses.
Pentagon updates Law of War Manual to recognize journalists' role in covering conflict
Frank Smyth, CPJ's security consultant, was stunned when he read the newly released Law of War Manual from the U.S. Department of Defense in June 2015. The manual included language that allowed journalists to be categorized as "unprivileged belligerents," which would allow military commanders to detain journalists indefinitely outside the rules of war.
"I was shocked that the manual failed to recognize the role and importance of independent reporting, while placing journalists in the same potential category as terrorists, saboteurs and spies," Smyth said.
CPJ campaigns for Mauritanian blogger
CPJ has been working actively, including behind the scenes, to secure the release of Mohamed Cheikh Ould Mohamed, a Mauritanian blogger who has been sentenced to death on charges of apostasy.
Khadija Ismayilova thanks CPJ, says she will fight for her cause
Khadija's first photo after jail pic.twitter.com/sj358k5WdU-- Khadija Ismayilova (@Khadija_Ismayil) May 25, 2016
CPJ Europe and Central Asia Senior Research Associate Muzaffar Suleymanov spoke to investigative journalist Khadija Ismayilova a few hours after her release from prison on May 25.
CPJ publishes annual edition of Attacks on the Press
On April 27, CPJ launched its annual publication of Attacks on the Press. This edition, which focuses on gender and media freedom worldwide, highlights the challenges faced by female journalists who fight to report the news against all odds. The book--and the dialogue it has already generated--is an important step in the fight toward ending sexual violence against female journalists.
Four imprisoned journalists freed in Azerbaijan
The president of Azerbaijan in March issued a decree pardoning 148 people, including three imprisoned journalists--Hilal Mamedov, Tofiq Yaqublu, and Parviz Hashimli.
Landmark conviction in 2000 attack on Colombian journalist
A Colombian court on February 26 convicted a former paramilitary fighter in the kidnapping and torture of Colombian journalist Jineth Bedoya and sentenced him to 11 years in prison. The fighter, Alejandro Cárdenas Orozco, was also ordered to pay a fine of around US$17,500.
Do you believe the free flow of information must be protected? Sign the #RightToReport petition and demand that President Obama immediately:
1. Issue a presidential policy directive prohibiting the hacking and surveillance of journalists and media organizations.
2. Limit aggressive prosecutions that ensnare journalists and intimidate whistleblowers.
3. Prevent the harassment of journalists at the U.S. border.
Or click here to see the full petition, and join leading journalists like Christiane Amanpour, The Guardian’s Alan Rusbridger, Editor of the AP Kathleen Carroll, and Arianna Huffington in signing on.