The partner organisations to Council of Europe Platform for the Promotion of Journalism and the Protection of Journalists issued today their annual assessment of the 2017 media freedom threats in the Council of Europe member states.
The organisations urged the authorities to adequately investigate the murder of Maltese journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, arguing that her killing is a clear sign of declining conditions in media freedom in Europe, and called on the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe to appoint a special rapporteur to monitor the murder investigation.
In 2017, the partners submitted 130 alerts concerning 29 countries. In 79 alerts (60%), the State was the source of the threat. Fewer than 30 percent of the alerts passed on to Member States received a State reply. The alerts consist mainly of attacks on physical safety and integrity of journalists (23%), harassment and intimidation (23%), and detention and imprisonment (21%).
Impunity remains one of the single biggest challenges to the protection of journalists. This includes 15 cases of murders of journalists and numerous cases of threats and other types of intimidation and harassment which were not investigated by State authorities, according to the report.