Thursday 4 May 2017

World Press Freedom Day (3 May 2017)

World-Press-Freedom-Day (विश्व प्रेस स्वतंत्रता दिवस) (3 May 2017)

In 1993, the United Nations General Assembly voted to declare May 3 — the anniversary of the Windhoek Declaration — as World Press Freedom Day. Every year since then, journalists have used the day as an opportunity to celebrate the “fundamental principles of press freedom,” to assess the state of press freedom globally, to defend the media from “attacks on their independence” and to pay tribute to journalists who have lost their lives on the job. In 2017, World Press Freedom Day has taken on a new importance. Freedom of the press globally declined(इंकार कर दिया) to its lowest point in 13 years last year, according to Freedom House, a human rights organization based in Washington D.C. And according to the Committee to Protect Journalists, 259 journalists across the world were in jail in 2016 — a record high since the watchdog organization started keeping track in 1990. On social media, many people spent the day speaking up for journalists amid an ongoing cacophony of voices shouting “fake news,” with public trust in the media at an all time low and with world leaders — in the United States to Turkey to Japan — making the independent media’s job more difficult, even in democracies(लोकतंत्र). 

In America, conversation (बातचीत) focused on President Donald Trump, who has tweeted that some members of the media are the “enemy of the American People!” Reporters Without Borders, an advocacy organization promoting freedom of the press, ranked the United States 43rd in the 2017 World Press Freedom Index, citing Trump’s attacks on the media and the Obama administration’s crackdown on whistle-blowers and information leaks as reasons for the placement. However, just south of the border, to be a journalist is not only a risky job, but a life-threatening(जीवन के लिए खतरा) one as well. According to the CPJ, Mexico is one of the world’s most dangerous places to be a journalist in the Western Hemisphere and ranks 148th in the 2017 World Press Freedom Index. Journalists who cover government corruption and crime are regularly met with death threats and assault — in some cases, they are killed for their work. Since 1992, 40 journalists have been killed on the job and 37 of those killed were murdered.

The Mexican government has attempted to respond to the violence by establishing a federal prosecutor to investigate threats and attacks against journalists. However, many say this is not enough.

CPJ has been spending the day raising awareness about the violence that Mexican journalists face.

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