Washington, DC- As journalists face increasing threats to their safety throughout the world U.S. Senators Bob Casey (D-PA) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) announced that they’ve introduced a resolution highlighting the importance of press freedom and the issue of impunity in attacks against journalists. The bipartisan resolution recognizes the dangers that reporters face and reaffirms freedom of the press as a priority for the U.S. government. According to Reporters Without Borders, 71 journalists and 39 citizen journalists were killed in 2013 in connection with their collection and dissemination of news and information. Additionally the Committee to Protect Journalists has labeled Syria, Iraq and Egypt as the most dangerous places for journalists on assignment in 2013. Since 1992 the Committee to Protect Journalists has documented 617 cases in which journalists have been murdered without the perpetrators of those crimes facing punishment.
“Journalists understand that their craft carries inherent risks, but especially in recent weeks, we have seen egregious cases of journalists killed and imprisoned in Syria, eastern Ukraine, Afghanistan, and the Central African Republic,” Senator Casey said. “This bipartisan resolution is just one way to reaffirm our nation’s commitment to protecting freedom of the press. Impunity for these attacks is unacceptable and in some cases, can create a culture of fear and self-censorship. We must insist that governments throughout the world do all they can to deliver justice for these journalists and their families.”
“Human freedom cannot prosper without press freedom,” said Senator Rubio. “As we’ve seen in my parents’ home country of Cuba, when a government suppresses the right of its people to gather and disseminate information, leaders are able to carry out human rights violations and repressive policies without fear of oversight. Today’s bipartisan resolution is an affirmation of the importance of free press in spreading liberty and human rights, and it is a sound condemnation of the violence toward reporters that has occurred in the Middle East, Latin America, Ukraine and so many other regions throughout the world.”