As commentators and critics on current events, journalists in repressive or unstable societies often place themselves knowingly at risk. Many have shown great courage in pursuing their stories in the midst of civil conflict or under threat or intimidation from political opponents who fear the full force of publicity about unsavoury truths for which they may be responsible. As with other public professions, journalists are exposed to attack both for what they say and for what they represent. Many journalists are persecuted as a result of working for politically-oriented newspapers, or providing what are construed as political comments by the authorities; but it is often the mere fact of exercising their professional duties, of bearing unwelcome witness to events, that lands the journalist in trouble. The IPI Annual Review of World Press Freedom (1977) reports that ‘1976 was a depressing year. Restraints on the media and the persecution of journalists throughout the world intensified to an unprecedented degree’.
KeywordsNews Agency Civil Conflict Professional Duty Political Opponent Political Comment
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