DANIELS G. O
The European Union has called for the protection of women journalists around the world.
The EU stated this during the commemoration of the 30th anniversary of World Press Freedom Day.
In a statement in commemoration of this year’s Special 30th anniversary celebration of World Press Freedom Day, the EU said, everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression and the right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.
The statement added that while the preservation of free, independent, and pluralistic media is vital for resilient and healthy democracies, press freedom is at stake in most parts of the world today.
According to the statement, journalists, media workers, and all those who bring independent quality information shed light on the gross human rights violations and atrocities going on around the world.
Journalists also hold those in power to account increasingly face discredit, threats, and attacks, especially through disinformation, and as such, journalists and media workers worldwide continue to pay a high price for practising their profession.
The EU says Women journalists are particularly vulnerable to threats and increasing attacks, both offline and online, as they are exposed to stigmatization, sexist hate speech, trolling, sexual and gender-based violence, and even murder.
73% of women journalists have experienced online threats, abuse, and harassment in the course of their work, and many of them have been detained.
The EU condemned all forms of threats and violence against journalists and support media workers in danger through local missions and via dedicated programmes across the globe just as it is taking action within the Union.
The EU is also countering Strategic lawsuits against public participation (SLAPP), regulating digital services and markets, and proposing an EU Media Freedom Act as well as building up critical capacity to counter foreign information manipulation and interference.
The EU express commitment to engaging with governments, the media and civil society, both in international fora as well as at the local level, to take initiative and strengthen press freedom around the world as defending and promoting press freedom is a universal mission that knows no borders.