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On World Press Freedom Day:Workshop debates safety of journalists.

... AMMAN (Star)--On the occasion of World Press Freedom Day this Thursday, May 3, UNESCO Jordan and UNESCO Iraq, along with USAID's media implementer, the International Research and Exchanges Board (IREX) are organizing a one-day conference to raise awareness about safety of journalists and impunity of crimes committed against media--this year's WPFD topics.Under the patronage of the Higher Media Council (HMC), representatives from local and international press freedom organizations will discuss the legal status of media professionals in conflict zones and the current levels of impunity when it comes to prosecute those responsible for the death of a reporter. The screening of a documentary about journalism in current Iraq and the testimonies of several reporters from Jordanian, Iraqi and western media will help understand the dangers to which media professionals are exposed while working on the ground.Despite the existing prohibitions under international humanitarian law against attacks intentionally directed against media workers in armed conflicts, hundreds of journalists and media staff have been systematically targeted in conflict areas over the past decade. For the fourth consecutive year Iraq has been the world's most dangerous country for the media to work in with 64 fatalities registered, according to the press freedom watchdog Reporters Without Borders (RWB). Worldwide, 2006 has been the bloodiest year for news media with a total of 167 journalists and support staff dead in 37 countries while doing their job or expressing their opinion.With regards to impunity, in the last 15 years, about 85 percent of all journalists' murderers faced neither investigation nor prosecution for their crimes, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ).nOn World Press Freedom Day:Workshop debates safety of journalists

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Publication:The Star (Amman, Jordan)
Date:May 5, 2007
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