Press Release
February 11, 2010


Concerned over the safety and security of journalists during the poll period, Senator Edgardo J. Angara called on government authorities to ensure the safety of media practitioners especially those covering the elections in violence-prone areas like Mindanao.

Angara issued the statement amidst numerous death threats against journalists. "The police must ensure that our media men are able to report freely on the election campaign without undue risk in order to prevent the loss of lives."

He added, "The recent Maguindanao massacre which claimed the lives of innocent people consisting mainly of women and journalists underlines the great dangers that Filipino journalists face. The police should not take these death threats lightly because in this dangerous time, anything can happen in a blink of an eye."

Angara also urged the authorities to carry out a full and swift investigation into the reported attempts to silence our media practitioners. "I am deeply saddened by the frequency of acts of violence against journalists whose sole concern is to seek out the truth."

The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), an independent press advocacy group, says at least 68 journalists were killed in 2009, a 60 percent increase over 2008 when 42 deaths were recorded.

Worse, according to the CPJ, about 85 percent of these cases have been unresolved, meaning no one has been brought to justice and made accountable for these crimes.

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