Seeking the reality and disclosing it is some people’s bread and butter. The stack of news we get on a daily basis is the result of journalists and all media workers’ blood, sweat and tears. However, these journalists lives’ are at stake and numbers do witness:78 deaths while on duty were reported in 2016 by the Committee to Protect Journalists.
In the same report, 54% of media workers are said dead in crossfire, 38% of them murdered while the remaining 6% breathed their last breath during dangerous assignments to mention but a few demonstrations and riots. Another relevant classification may be drawn upon the victims’ responsibilities. 27% of them were broadcast reporters, 33% were camera operators and another 33% among photographers. According to CPJ, 29% were internet reporters, 15% print reporters, 8% editors and the remaining 6% were producers.
In the same vein, the committee took account of the deadliest countries in 2016. At the top of the list are the 14 cases recorded in Syria. Iraq and Yemen equal out with six deaths. Afghanistan follows with four deaths whereas both Libya and Somalia filed three deaths. Eventually, the journalists’ blood was shed twice in Mexico, Turkey, India, and Pakistan and once in Guinea, Ukraine, Myanmar and Brazil.
Besides, CPJ investigated the sources of fire. According to their research, political groups are by far the most alleged with a rate of 58%. Military officials come in second with 23% while 10% are labelled as unknown. 6% of the deaths are pinned on criminal groups, 2% of local residents and another 2% on paramilitary groups.
Another classification is that of the issues covered by the victims. To begin with, 75% of the victims came to an untimely end while covering wars, 38% while covering politics and 19% while investigating corruption. Furthermore, 17% of the cases are related to crime news and another 17% to human rights news. 13% of the media workers were struck down while reporting culture news and 4% of the deaths are associated with business and sports news coverage.
CPJ paid tribute to those journalists by honouring their names in their database so that everyone would hold a memory of them. A laudable action to recognise those knights who sweated blood to blow the lid off the hidden even when their lives were at the line.
—Roiya Souissi, Correspondent (Our World)