Journalist support groups agree media death toll rising
04 January 2007
Four leading journalist support organisations in recent days have issued their counts of journalists who died covering the news in 2006. Although the numbers varied, all agreed the global news media death toll was rising significantly.
The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) said the killings of reporters and media staff reached historic levels with at least 155 murders, assassinations and unexplained deaths. http://www.ifj.org
The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) said the 2006 toll jumped to 55 journalists killed in direct connection with their work plus 27 possibly work-related, compared with 47 and 17 in 2005. http://www.cpj.org/Briefings/2006/killed_06/killed_06.html
Reporters Without Borders reported 81 journalists and 32 media assistants killed in the worst year since 1994. http://www.rsf.org/article.php3?id_article=20286
The International News Safety Institute (INSI) said 2006 was the worst year on record with 137 journalists and 30 support staff dead.
All agreed Iraq was the worst killing ground and Iraqi journalists and support staff bore the brunt. INSI and the IFJ recorded 68 fatalities in 2006, RSF 64 and CPJ 32.
Each organisation has its own methods and rules for tracking and recording news media casualties. Details can be found on their websites.
The United Nations addressed the issue of rising media fatalities on 23 December when the Security Council unanimously adopted Resolution 1738 condemning attacks on journalists and calling for all parties to conflict to respect the independence and rights of journalists and other media professionals.