Greece: three journalists assaulted by far-right demonstrators

On 20 January 2019, German journalist Thomas Jacobi, Greek photojournalist Kostis Ntantamis, as well as a cameraman for the public broadcaster ERT, have been attacked by members of the Greek neo-Nazi party Golden Dawn in Athens. The three journalists were covering a protest held outside the parliament building on Syntagma Square about the renaming of North Macedonia. Journalist Thomas Iacobi, co-author of our documentary, was attacked in Athens today, while on the job, by a group of fascists, who identified him and called out to him: "You! you made that documentary on Golden Dawn!"[Audio from the attack (Greek): https://t.co/OrDsJyMDEt] —…

Ukraine: Kherson daily “New Day” tear-gassed and shot during press conference

On 18 January 2019, during a press conference hosted by the press club of the daily “New Day” (Novyi Den) in Kherson, Ukraine, the newspaper came under attack from assailants using rubber bullets and tear-gas from outside the building, before entering. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) joins its member in Ukraine, the National Union of Journalists of Ukraine (NUJU), in strongly condemning this attack endangering Khersonian journalists’ lives. “We demand a thorough investigation and that the culprits be swiftly broad to justice for no lesser charges than an armed assault on a newspaper,” said the EFJ General Secretary Ricardo…

Croatia: we call on HRT to withdraw claims targeting journalists’ representatives

The International and European  Federations of Journalists (IFJ and EFJ) call on the management of Croatian public broadcaster HRT to withdraw the recently filed lawsuits against the Croatian Journalists’ Association (HND/CJA), its President Hrvoje Zovko and the President of the HND/CJA Branch at HRT, Sanja Mikleušević Pavić. Between Christmas and New Year’s Eve, HRT managers filed lawsuits for alleged criminal offences against its honour and reputation by the Croatian Journalists’ Association, its President and the President of the CJA Branch at HRT. HRT claims a total financial compensation of 500,000 kunas (67,000 EUR). According to a report from NGO Osservatorio Balcani…

We call on the EU to protect author’s rights and deliver on fairer Europe

The International and European Federations of Journalists (IFJ/EFJ), respectively the world and Europe’s largest journalists’ organisations, reiterate their calls on the EU to stand up for journalism and authors’ rights, as negotiations on a Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market draw to an end. In this context, the IFJ and the EFJ recall that the key ambition for developing the legislation was to deliver on a fairer distribution of the revenues generated in the digital world. Extreme wealth generated online derives from the work of authors and creators, which is at the core of copyright licensing.  Their remuneration should…

Albanian government must retract proposed laws on online media

A group of organisations for the protection of human rights, freedom of information and journalists associations demand from the Albanian Prime Minister to drop proposals on regulation of online media. The European and International Federation of Journalists (IFJ and EFJ) join their Albanian affiliates, the Association of Professional Journalists of Albanian and the League of Albanian Journalists, and the other organisations on their request to the government to drop an amendment that will put in risk online media freedom in the country. Here is the full joint-letter: We inform the public that the two proposals endanger freedom of expression and…

Fair trial on appeal for Jovo Martinovic

Western Balkan’s Regional Platform for advocating media freedom and journalists’ safety, which represents more than 8000 members, calls the Appellate Court of Montenegro to reconsider the first-instance verdict of the Higher Court, which find the investigative journalist Jovo Martinovic guilty, two days ago in Podgorica.  Martinovic was sentenced to 18 months in prison for criminal offenses of creating a criminal organization and unauthorized production, possession and trafficking of narcotic drugs. The judgment is the first instance and an appeal is permitted. Martinovic spent 14 months in detention, and since January 2017 he was allowed to defend himself while at liberty.…

Open letter to European Institutions: public reporting must be a safe option for whistleblowers

The Council of the European Union will soon adopt its general approach on the directive on the protection of whistleblowers. Ahead of this crucial political agreement among the Member States, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) would like to insist about the importance of granting the widest protection to whistleblowers, including persons choosing to turn to the media to blow the whistle. The adoption of a directive which would penalise whistleblowers acting as journalistic sources would be damaging to democracy. That is why the EFJ republishes the open letter co-signed by the European Broadcasting Union, ENPA, EMMA and News Media…

Turkey deports Dutch journalist without explanation

On 17 January 2019, the journalist Ans Boersma, Turkey correspondent for the Dutch financial paper Het Financieele Dagblad, was deported from Istanbul and sent back to Amsterdam. Ms Boersma was apprehended by Turkish police a day before following her visit to the migration office to renew her residence permit as a foreign correspondent. Just nine days before her arrest, she received her accreditation and press card from the Turkish authorities for the year 2019. Ruling out the possibility of a misunderstanding or administrative issue, the police told the journalist that  she formed a risk to Turkey’s national security without any further…

Montenegro: EFJ demands the immediate acquittal of Jovo Martinovic

On January 15, a court in Montenegro sentenced the independent journalist Jovo Martinovic to 18 months in jail. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF) and the undersigned partner organisations condemn the conviction of independent journalist Jovo Martinovic. The court sentenced Martinovic to 18 months in jail. His trial continued in the High Court of Podgorica, Montenegro, after he was charged by the Special Prosecution Office for A) the criminal act of creating a criminal organisation and B) the criminal act of unauthorised production, possession and traffic of narcotics. The judge in her verdict stated that he…

Finland: union issued a hate campaigns advice kit for journalists

The EFJ Finnish affiliate, the Union of Journalists in Finland (UJF), published an advice kit for journalists who are subject to online hate speech, also dedicated to colleagues and supervisors. This initiative came from the alarming observation that journalists are increasingly the targets of hate speech and orchestrated online abuse. The consequences on their work and mental health has to be taken seriously. The UJF plays an important role in supporting their members victims of hate speech. “It’s sometimes been really tough, but it would have been a hundred times harder if the union hadn’t supported me.  I don’t know…

EFJ condemns attacks against journalists in Germany

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) joins its affiliates in Germany, the dju in ver.di and the Deutscher Journalisten-Verband (DJV) in condemning attacks against several media houses including die Tageszeitung (TAZ), Frankfurter Rundschau, the ARD Hauptstadt Büro by groups of the Identitäre Bewegung (IB, Identitarian Movement) this morning. A journalist was physically attacked in front of the media building of the TAZ in Berlin while trying to prevent a group of men and women of the Identitäre Bewegung (IB) to attach posters against left wing violence at the wall of the media house. The Identical movement (IB) is an extreme…

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