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International Conference “Safety of Journalists in Ukraine. Ending Impunity” in Kyiv

Kyiv 25 October 2016
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International Conference “Safety of Journalists in Ukraine. Ending Impunity” in Kyiv

On 25 October the International Conference “Safety of Journalists in Ukraine. Ending Impunity” was held in Kyiv to assess the current situation on the safety of journalists. Its participants developed recommendations on ending impunity for crimes against journalists and eliminating occasions when journalists are prevented from carrying out their professional activity in various ways.

The event was organised jointly by the two Council of Europe projects - the CoE/EU Programmatic Cooperation Framework and the CoE “Strengthening freedom of media and establishing public broadcasting system in Ukraine” together with the Administration of the President of Ukraine, Parliamentary Committee on Freedom of Speech and Information Policy and the NGO “Institute of Mass Information”.

Patrick Penninckx, Head of Information Society Department of the Council of Europe said: In 2015 the Council of Europe launched the internet-based Platform for the Protection of Journalism and Safety of Journalists. Its surveys conducted in partnership with media organisations, reported threats against journalists in the Council of Europe member States. The Platform as well launched calls for action to safeguard media freedom. As of October 2016, the Platform has recorded 218 alerts from 27 countries which are perceived as serious media threats. Among them 128 alerts are considered to be level 1 - the most severe and damaging violations of media freedom! 13 alerts have been submitted from Ukraine”.

In January-September 2016, the Institute of Mass Information has registered one murder, 26 cases of assault, 77 cases of impeding journalists’ professional activities and 7 cases of censorship in Ukraine. In the meantime, the recent “Journalists at risk: part of the job?” study, conducted by the Council of Europe revealed that 31% of journalists in the 47 Council of Europe member States have experienced physical assault during last three years, 46% were threatened with force and 69% experienced psychological violence.

The video of the conference can be viewed at online here.

“Programmatic Cooperation Framework for Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Republic of Moldova, Ukraine and Belarus “ co-operation project

“Strengthening Freedom of Media and Establishing a Public Broadcasting System in Ukraine” co-operation project

The Information Society Department of the Council of Europe has unveiled its report on the state of freedom of expression in Council of Europe member States in 2021.

This annual review, based on the findings of Council of Europe bodies and monitoring mechanisms, is focussed on legal guarantees for freedom of expression, safeguards for the safety of journalists and others who speak up, independent and pluralistic media environment and reliability and trust of information.

Freedom of expression Freedom of expression

“Everyone has the right to freedom of expression. This right shall include freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart information and ideas without interference by public authority and regardless of frontiers. This Article shall not prevent States from requiring the licensing of broadcasting, television or cinema enterprises.

The exercise of these freedoms, since it carries with it duties and responsibilities, may be subject to such formalities, conditions, restrictions or penalties as are prescribed by law and are necessary in a democratic society, in the interests of national security, territorial integrity or public safety, for the prevention of disorder or crime, for the protection of health or morals, for the protection of the reputation or rights of others, for preventing the disclosure of information received in confidence, or for maintaining the authority and impartiality of the judiciary.”

Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights

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A mission to inform: journalists at risk speak out

The  murder of investigative journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia in October 2017 sent shock waves through Europe. Violence and acts of harassment against journalists have become alarmingly frequent, as was laid bare in the Council of Europe’s 2017 survey of 940 journalists across the continent.

This follow-up study is about the human cost to journalists who seek to hold the powerful to account. It is based on in-depth interviews with  20  journalists who use their reporting skills to expose  corruption, injustice and abuses, often putting their safety at risk. They share their insights into the realities of practising cutting-edge journalism while facing aggression, intimidation and vicious cyber-attacks. Too often the necessary protections fail and crimes against journalists go unpunished. 

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Freedom of expression by Nicolas Vadot Freedom of expression by Nicolas Vadot

Following the decision of the Committee of Ministers on 16 March 2022 the Russian Federation is no longer a member of the Council of Europe. The website will be updated as soon as possible to take account of this development.

"Everyone has the right to freedom of expression"

Art. 10 European Convention on Human Rights


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