Northern Ireland: journalist Lyra McKee shot dead while covering riots

Journalist Lyra McKee was shot dead while she was covering the riots at the Creggan housing estate in the city of Londonderry (Derry), Northern Ireland, on Thursday night 19 April. The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) join their affiliate the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) in the UK and Ireland in condemning this killing and call on a full investigation into her death. A former Belfast Telegraph journalist and a NUJ member, Lyra McKee, 29, was a freelancer and a novelist. The riots took place in the run-up to the Easter weekend, which…

Finland: disproportionate defamation case against journalist

 Johanna Vehkoo, a Finnish journalist, has been found guilty of defaming local city counselor Junes Lokka by referring to him as a racist and ‘nazi clown’ in a 2016 Facebook post. The politician is known as an anti-immigration activist with a history of making far-right extreme pronouncements, for which he was fined. Vehkoo  has written extensively about ‘fake’ news, hate speech and the problems they pose for journalism. The court found that Vehkoo’s comments on her Facebook page constituted a personal attack on Lokka and that she did not focus her criticism on his politics.  She was ordered to pay…

Russia: EFJ and IFJ voice concerns over new law on fake news and respect for State

The European and International Federations of Journalists (EFJ-IJF) today expressed serious concerns over the new Russian law on “fake” news and the “lack of respect for the state, the authorities, and society”, warning it is likely to have a chilling effect on freedom of expression in the country. The EFJ and IFJ urge the Russian authorities to review the legislation which came into force on 18 March and to give greater consideration to representation of the Union of Journalists of Russia (RUJ), an EFJ-IFJ affiliate. Under this law, the “flagrant” disrespect for the state, public authorities, official symbols and society…

Serbia: EFJ/IFJ urge restrain from violence against journalists after call for protests at media houses

Following calls for anti-government protests at the Serbian private TV Pink offices, the  European and International Federation of Journalists (EFJ and IFJ) today joined their Serbian affiliates NUNS, UNS and SINOS in urging protesters to refrain from all forms of violence against journalists and appealing to all stakeholders to ensure journalists’ safety and the protection of the media’s property. In statement signed by eight media organisation, including three IFJ and EFJ affiliates NUNS, UNS and SINOS said that citizens have the right to express their dissatisfaction with the social or political situation in the country through peaceful actions, including protests…

Open letter to Slovakia’s President-elect Zuzana Čaputová

After lawyer and civil rights activist Zuzana Čaputová was elected as Slovakia’s first female president on 30 March 2019, EFJ and several freedom of expression organisations joined the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF) to send her a letter, drawing attention to the press and media freedom situation in the country.     To: Ms Zuzana Čaputová 2 April 2019 Dear President-elect Čaputová, Congratulations for winning the presidential election in Slovakia on 30 March 2019.  Your victory marks a strong demand of the Slovak people for change, for true democracy under the rule of law – one year…

Serbia: IFJ/EFJ condemn targeted campaign against N1 television

N1, a cable, regional news channel operating in Serbia, Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina, is facing a targeted campaign of pressures and threats by state officials. The International and European Federation of Journalists (IFJ and EFJ) have joined their Serbian affiliates, the Independent Union of Serbia’s Journalists (NUNS) and the Journalists’ Association of Serbia (UNS), in condemning the attacks on media freedom and urged the authorities to stop targeting and labelling media. In a letter sent to the IFJ, N1 management states that the government’s objective is to “compromise and intimidate N1 by labelling it as an anti-Serb TV”. N1 is exclusive CNN news affiliate channel for…

EFJ welcomes EP resolution calling to ensure safety of journalists

The European Parliament passed on Thursday, with 398 votes to 85 and 69 abstentions, a resolution summarising the conclusions of the working group set up within the Civil Liberties Committee to monitor the situation of rule of law in the EU, particularly in Malta and Slovakia, following the murders of journalists Daphne Caruana Galizia and Ján Kuciak and his fiancée Martina Kušnírová. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) welcomes this EP resolution deploring serious shortcomings in the rule of law in Malta and Slovakia, also warning of rising threats for journalists throughout the EU. The text underlines that the assassinations…

IFJ/EFJ hail adoption of Copyright Directive and urge Member States to ensure fair and proportionate remuneration for journalists

The European Parliament today adopted the Copyright Directive in the Digital Single Market by 348 votes in favor and 274 against. A call to open the text to amendments was lost by just 5 votes. The International and European Federations of Journalists (IFJ/EFJ) welcome the adoption of this long-awaited piece of legislation, which they have worked tirelessly to promote and improve. The newdirective includes key provisions for the publishing industry and authors, including journalists receiving a share of the revenue press publications generate online using their work, the principle of appropriate and proportionate remuneration for authors, key transparency obligations and…

EFJ renew call for the adoption of Copyright Directive

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) reminds MEPs that EFJ and IFJ support the Copyright Directive. The EFJ has today reiterated its support for the Copyright Directive and called on Members of the European Parliament to adopt a text that ensures journalists in the European Union will benefit from the revenues generated from the online use of their work. As EFJ and IFJ have repeatedly pointed out the proposal includes important provisions for the publishing industry and authors, including a share of the revenue press publications generate online (Article 11), the principle of proportionate remuneration for authors (Article -14), key…

European elections 2019: EFJ Manifesto calls to endorse 8 principles for free media

On 26 May, European citizens will elect their Members of the European Parliament (MEP) to represent them at the new European Parliament. During the campaign, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) is launching its Manifesto calling on all candidate MEPs to commit for the revival of a free and pluralistic media in Europe, so urgent in times of disinformation and losing trust in EU institutions. The 2019 EP elections come at a turning point for the European Union which urgently needs to reconnect with its citizens and represent their interests. We wish a forward-looking EU where not only the economy…

Serbia : Public TV building stormed by anti-government protesters

A group of around 100 anti-government protesters stormed the building of the Serbian national broadcaster RTS in Belgrade on Saturday 16 March, demanding to be allowed to make a public address live on air. The European and International Federations of Journalists (EFJ and IFJ) join their Serbian affiliates, Journalists’ Association of Serbia (UNS) and the Independent Journalists’ Association of Serbia (NUNS), in condemning this incident and demanding all parties to respect RTS’s editorial independence. Protesters, who wanted to voice their opposition to Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic, had to be evacuated from the RTS building after about 50 riot police were…

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