We demand justice for Lyra McKee and safety for Northern Ireland journalists

Sunday 18 April 2021 marks two years since Lyra McKee was shot dead while reporting on riots in Derry. Still no one has been convicted of her murder. As we honour Lyra McKee and reiterate our call for justice, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) joined the Media Freedom Rapid Response (MFRR) partners in expressing our grave concern over the recent increase in attacks and threats to journalists and media workers in Northern Ireland. A talented and courageous investigative journalist, McKee, in her writing on the consequences of the Troubles for a host of domestic and international outlets, tackled issues…

Netherlands: New violent attacks against journalists around church services

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) joined today the Media Freedom Rapid Response (MFRR) partners in condemning the violence directed at journalists and media workers on Sunday 28 March in several Dutch cities and calling for increased protection. On Sunday 28 March, several journalists were reporting from churches in the towns of Krimpen aan den Ijssel and Urk about the gathering of hundreds of churchgoers despite strict anti-coronavirus regulations. Hostile and aggressive behaviour from individual churchgoers, sometimes leading to physical violence, soon followed and made it very difficult for journalists to continue their reporting. In Krimpen, Jacco van Giessen, a…

Montenegro: EFJ-IFJ condemn judicial persecution of journalist Jovo Martinović

In a statement published today, leading international press freedom and journalists’ organisations, Including EFJ and IFJ, condemn the continued judicial persecution of Montenegrin investigative journalist, Jovo Martinović after his appeal was rejected. Leading press freedom and journalists’ organisations, including Media Freedom Rapid Response (MFRR) partners, strongly condemn the decision by the Court of Appeals to reject Jovo Martinović’s appeal and uphold the first instance verdict of the High Court in Podgorica which convicted Martinović to 12 months of prison. While he will not be imprisoned due to time already spent behind bars, Jovo Martinović will have a criminal record, solely…

Defamation lawsuit against Gazeta Wyborcza editor-in-chief by Polish Justice Minister must be dropped

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) joined partners of the Media Freedom Rapid Response (MFRR) today in strongly condemning the civil defamation lawsuit launched against the editor-in-chief of Poland’s biggest daily newspaper Gazeta Wyborcza by the serving Justice Minister Zbigniew Ziobro. Our organisations consider this to be yet another example of the Justice Ministry’s use of lawsuits as a tool for pressuring and financially draining the newspaper, which is one of the staunchest critics of the ruling Law and Justice (PiS). We call directly on the Minister, who is also the Prosecutor-General of Poland, to immediately withdraw the lawsuit and…

Serbia: Groups condemn deafening silence of government over KRIK smear campaign

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) today joined nine other media freedom groups in writing to the Serbian president Vučić and prime minister Brnabić to express serious concerns over the lack of a resolute government response to the dangerous smear campaign against independent news outlet KRIK. The muted response from government leaders was the main catalyst for four of the nine non-state members of the newly-established Working Group for the Security and Protection of Journalists to withdraw, undermining its work and posing questions over trust in the body. Read the letter.

Austria: Federal government urgently needs to propose new funding model for Wiener Zeitung

The world’s oldest daily newspaper still in publication, Austria’s Wiener Zeitung, is facing possible closure of its print edition as the government’s plans to remove mandatory public advertisements of companies have become clearer. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) joined its Austrian affiliates, the Austrian Press Union (GPA) and younion_Die Daseinsgewerkschaft, in urging the federal government to propose an alternative plan to finance Wiener Zeitung in order to avoid job losses and further deterioration of media pluralism. The plans announced by the Austrian People’s Party (ÖVP) and Greens coalition are by no means new. The mandatory public advertisements of companies in…

Serbia: We condemn dangerous and baseless smear campaign aimed at KRIK

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) joined MFRR partners in condemning the smear campaign aimed at the Network for Investigation of Crime and Corruption (KRIK) by pro-government media outlets that propagated the baseless and dangerous claim that KRIK has a ‘secret deal’ with Veljko Belivuk, a recently arrested leader of an organised crime group.  On 9th and 10th March, a number of pro-Government media outlets alleged that KRIK is coordinating with Belivuk to monitor or threaten the Serbian President, Aleksandar Vučić. Tabloid newspapers, including The Serbian Telegraph, Kurir and Alo published front-page articles that KRIK is Belivuk’s private media. Alo stated…

First MFRR Summit “Locked Down: Protecting Europe’s Free Press”, 17-20 March

Registration The European Federation of Journalists invites you to attend the first MFRR Summit taking place online between 17th and 20th March. Locked Down: Protecting Europe’s Free Press will feature keynote speeches by Irene Khan and Věra Jourová, and bring together 32 journalists and experts from 16 countries to explore the threats facing media freedom in Europe across eight panels and two workshops. The Media Freedom Rapid Response (MFRR) monitors, tracks and responds to media freedom violations in EU Member States and Candidate Countries. In its first year, through Mapping Media Freedom, 378 alerts (with 1159 attacked persons or entities related…

France: Investigation opened into attempted murder after attack on journalist

A photographer for the regional daily L’Union, Christian Lantenois, was seriously injured on Saturday 27 February while covering tensions in the Croix-Rouge district of Reims. Lantenois is currently in the intensive care unit in Reims’ hospital in a serious condition. The European and International Federation of Journalists (EFJ/FIJ) strongly condemn this despicable act. An investigation has been opened for attempted murder. Christian Lantenois, 65 years old, went to Croix-Rouge on Saturday 27 February at around 3 pm in a car identifiable as belonging to the newspaper L’Union to cover the tensions in the district. The photographer was found shortly afterwards, in…