50 journalists were killed in 2020: Reporters Without Borders


Published: 2020-12-29 10:05

Last Updated: 2024-05-22 11:39

50 journalists were killed in 2020: Reporters Without Borders
50 journalists were killed in 2020: Reporters Without Borders

According to an annual report published by Reporters Without Borders (RSF) Tuesday, 50 journalists were killed during the year 2020.

The Editor-in-Chief of RSF Pauline Adès-Mevel, told AFP that 70 percent of these journalists were killed in zones of 'peace'.

These journalists were"deliberately targeted and eliminated", she said, adding that it was usually for having published investigations which "embarrass" governments and criminal networks.

In 2019, 53 journalists were killed between Jan. 1 2019 and Dec. 15 2019, despite the decrease in the number of press reports due to the coronavirus crisis , said Adès-Mevel.

The percentage of journalists who died in conflict zones decreased from 58 percent in 2016 to 32 percent this year in countries such as Syria and Yemen, or in "low or medium-intensity conflict areas." (Afghanistan and Iraq).

Mexico was the country with the largest number of journalists killed (eight), followed by Afghanistan (five), India (four), Pakistan (four), the Philippines (three) and Honduras (three).

Of the total number of journalists killed in 2020, 84 percent were deliberately targeted, compared to 63 percent in 2019.

Reporters Without Borders confirmed that "a number of them (died) in brutal conditions."

RSF cited a photo of Mexican journalist Julio Valdivia Rodrigues from El Mundo de Veracruz newspaper, whose headless body was found in the east of the country, and his colleague, Editor-in-Chief Victor Fernando Alvarez Chavez of a local news site, whose severed body was found in the city of Acapulco.

In India, a journalist Rakesh Singh, was sprayed using a flammable alcohol substance and burned, while the journalist and TV station reporter in Tamil Nadu, Israfil Moses, was killed with machetes.

In Iran, the authorities sentenced to death and executed Ruhollah Zam, who was running ‘Amad News’, an anti-government website.

Nearly 20 investigative journalists have been killed this year, including 10 who were investigating corruption cases and public fund embezzlement, four who were investigating cases related to organized crime, and three who were working on topics related to environmental issues.

RSF also reported the killing of seven journalists who were covering demonstrations in Iraq, Nigeria and Colombia.

Notably, RSF also indicated that there are currently 387 journalists in prison, calling it a “record high number.”

Additionally, the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) indicated that 2,658 journalists have been killed since 1990.