Dunja Mijatović, OSCE representative on Freedom of the Media, will leave office on Friday 10 March. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) would like to reiterate its call – defended in a letter on 16 February 2017 – to ensure continuity of the Office of OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media. The EFJ, as many media organisations, strongly believe in the high value and importance of this Office.
Dunja Mijatović gave her final speech today during the presentation of her final report to the OSCE Permanent Council. She reflected on her seven years in office and highlighted the need for increased political support of the office. She concluded with a rallying cry to journalists and media worldwide.
Read below an excerpt:
A day will come when there are no journalists in prison, when all attacks are quickly investigated and those who commit them are brought to justice. However we are not there yet!The authority and effect this office has is not an illusion. It is set forth in the Mandate which you wrote and is my job to fulfill. It is your job to protect that Mandate and ensure that the Representative, whoever that might be, can work with complete assurance that he or she will be supported and backed by all the States. The decision to support this Institution is in your hands.Civil society and media freedom organizations will be taking note of what happens after midnight on Friday when my mandate ends.These past seven years have been an amazing journey filled with big challenges, big responsibilities, big rewards and big risks – to both my staff and me. But I would like to express my gratitude for this incredible opportunity and for your support since, as you know, I’ve gone through the consensus process three times now and that shows your commitment to find solutions and ensure the continuation of this important and visible institution.(…)I hope that my successor will build on the foundation established by the first representative, Freimut Duve, and continued by Miklós Haraszti and me.And I also hope that my successor will be a strong, independent and clear voice for free media and free expression across the entire OSCE region.I want to close with a message to all journalists and members of the media.Never give in; never give up. Eternal vigilance is the price of a free press.
Photo credit: OSCE.