New online platform launched to protect journalists

Council of Europe

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) has joined forces with the Council of Europe (CoE) and media freedom partner agencies, in launching a new online “rapid reaction” platform for journalists under threats.

The platform would allow trusted media freedom partner agencies to post “alerts” on a public, centralised online platform when individual journalists are in danger or their work is under threat – opening the way for swift reactions from international organisations which uphold media freedom standards, such as the Council of Europe, OSCE Media Freedom Representative, EU and UN. The platform will be launched on 4 December in Paris in a conference jointly organised by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) and the French Senate.

Alerts would include factual information – vetted by the partners – on physical threats to journalists, bloggers or writers, as well as their sources, invasions of privacy or judicial intimidation of journalists through abusive use of laws on defamation, national security, or extremism. The platform would also show action taken by the Council of Europe in response, as well as regular reports and the comments of the member States concerned.

Mogens Blicher Bjerrregård, the EFJ President will be attending the conference and sign a “memorandum of understanding” on the creation of the new platform together with other media partner agencies, including the International Federation of Journalists, Reporters Without Borders (RWB), Article 19 and the Association of European Journalists (AEJ). The meeting with ministers from the CoE countries will also discuss how member states can protect journalists against physical attacks and against abusive use of the law, as well as on how the “rapid reaction” platform would work in detail.

For more information about the new platform and the conference, please visit the CoE PACE website.

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