Media Tracker lists the challenges and achievements of the journalists and media organisations worldwide. Here’s a list of journalism at risk stories in the recent month. We would like to thank international media protection organisation and news outlets for their content.
- Turkey opened a mass trial on 24 July to decide the fate of 17 journalists and leading employees of the daily Cumhuriyet. The Kemalist newspaper is one of the oldest news publication in the country. They are facing up to 43 years in prison on “terrorism” charges for abetting the failed coup of July 2016. The journalists were government started imprisoning the journalists and staff of Cumhuriyet since October 2016. Eleven of them have already spent months in prison. Over 150 media outlets have been closed by the government since the failed coup. Currently over a 100 journalists are languishing in Turkish jails. (IFJ)
- The maker the 64 tianwang human rights website, Huang Qi, and winner of the Reporters Without Borders (RSF) Press Freedom Prize in the Cyber-Dissident category in 2004, is feared with withering away in detention. His close relatives fear that the Chinese authorities could let him die in detention, as they did with Nobel peace laureate Liu Xiaobo. In 2000 he was awarded five years jail sentence as the first-ever Chinese “cyber-dissident” accused for his online activism. He was imprisoned again for a further three years in 2009 for reporting on low-quality school buildings that collapsed in a massive earthquake the previous year in Sichuan, claiming 87,000 lives. Presently, more than 100 journalists and online journalists are incarcerated in China’s prisons. (HKFP & RSF)
- In Lahore, Pakistan, FIA officer allegedly harassed and detained Channel 24 reporter Saba Bajeer and Dawn News reporter Aitzaz Hassan on June 21, 2017 while they investigated and questioned the head of the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan, at an Islamabad hospital where he was being examined following his arrest on charges of tampering with records, according to news reports. Despite promises no cases were lodged against the accused. (IFEX)
- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has recently threatened to close down Aljazeera’s offices in Jerusalem and to expel the broadcaster from Israel. This comes in the wake of accusations, accusing the network of inciting viewers to violence in its coverage of protests last week, according to news reports. Al-Jazeera has faced pressure from Middle Eastern regional governments increasingly in recent months. In late May 2017, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Jordan and Egypt tried to curtail, block operation and access of the Qatari-funded Al-Jazeera’s news websites and broadcast. (CPJ)