Afghan, International Journalists Organisations, RSF Call on UNSC to Protect Journalists in Afghanistan

Afghan Journalists Safety Committee (AJSC), International Media Support (IMS) and Reporters Without Borders (RSF) endorse the letter by Afghanistan’s journalist community and call on the UN Security Council to take serious actions to reduce violence against journalists in Afghanistan.

RSF in a press release said that the three journalist/media support organizations also stress that without respecting fundamental international covenants, commitments and international human rights, and above all the Geneva Conventions that treat media and journalists as protected civilian entities and individuals that are meant to be immune from military attack, peace talks are unreasonable and untenable.

“Accepting international commitments requires ensuring the security of journalists and the cessation of violence against them. Afghan media and journalists do not deserve to become helpless due to the silence of the international institutions and its highest body, the United Nations,” the press release reads.

“Press freedom and the expansion of the media landscape is one of the most significant achievements of Afghanistan in the last two decades.
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Unfortunately, given the country’s political and security challenges, this achievement is extremely vulnerable. There are serious concerns that with the escalation of insecurity and conflict, this achievement would perish. Despite Afghan journalists’ courage and dedication to continue their profession, the rise of threats and violence against them is shrinking the environment,” the press release said.

RSF cited that Afghan Journalists Safety Committee, International Media Support (IMS) and Reporters Without Borders (RSF) call on UN Security Council to support the media community in decreasing violence against journalists in accordance with UN Security Council Resolution 1738 (December 23, 2006) and UN General Assembly Resolution (November 26, 2013) which are the mainstay of defending the journalists’ rights in conflicts and warzones.

“The three institutions believe that violence benefits from the culture of impunity. Ensuring justice for victims is an effective step towards supporting press freedom in Afghanistan and reducing violence against journalists. The three organizations also declare their readiness to cooperate with international institutions regarding the promotion of safety for journalists,” the press release added.

Afghanistan is ranked 122nd out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2020 World Press Freedom Index.

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