Washington, September 29, 2016--The United Nations Human Rights Council's annual resolution on journalist safety for the first time urges all states to release arbitrarily detained journalists. The resolution, co-sponsored by 87 countries and adopted today in Geneva, raises new concerns about mounting attacks on journalists during elections and calls for states to protect the confidentiality of journalist sources.
The Committee to Protect Journalists has joined 34 other organizations in calling on the U.N. Human Rights Council to vote in favor of renewing the mandate of the special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran. The vote is scheduled to take place during the 31st session of the council, which ends March 24.
The Committee to Protect Journalists, along with 35 human rights groups, today joined a call for member states of the U.N. Human Rights Council to renew the mandate of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Iran at the council's 28th session.
The Sri Lankan government has taken yet another step to silence critical media coverage, banning non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from holding press conferences and issuing press releases, as well as running workshops or training sessions. The action, announced Sunday by Sri Lanka's Ministry of Defense, left the country's many press groups wondering whether they are even allowed to issue a statement criticizing the decision.
New York, March 26, 2013--The BBC announced today that it has suspended all radio broadcasts in Sri Lanka following what it called "continued interruption and interference" by a national broadcaster in the country.
On February 13, Navi Pillay, the U.N. high commissioner for human rights, said in her annual report to the U.N. Human Rights Council (UNHRC) that Sri Lanka's government has not taken enough steps recommended by its own Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC). Although the LLRC is seen as a flawed attempt to heal Sri Lanka after decades of fratricidal conflict, last year the Human Rights Council adopted a U.S. motion calling on the government to act on the LLRC's recommendations. President Mahinda Rajapaksa's government ignored the resolution, but the Americans say they will make a similar motion at this year's meeting of the 22nd session of the UNHRC, which opens on February 25 in Geneva.
Back in November 2010, Britain's Channel 4 broadcast a leaked video that appears to show men in Sri Lankan military uniforms executing bound prisoners, the camera panning across a series of bodies laid out in a ditch. Family and friends identified one of those bodies as that of Tamil Tiger TV newscaster Shoba, also known as Isaipriya. If authenticated, the video could constitute evidence that Isaipriya was murdered. It would be one step toward accountability in a long string of unsolved murders of journalists in Sri Lanka. It would also be evidence of war crimes that are said to have been committed during the final phases of the 27-year civil war between the Sri Lankan government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, or LTTE. But disputes have ensued between the United Nations, which claims the video is authentic, and the Sri Lankan government, which claims that it is fake.
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.