Africa media stakeholders launch digital platform to protect journalists

Media stakeholders including the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and Federation of African Journalists (FAJ) today joined African Union leaders and UNESCO to launch a new digital platform to protect and promote the safety of journalists in Africa.

The IFJ and FAJ worked with the UNESCO Addis Office, The African Editors Forum (TAEF), AU Africa Peer Review Mechanism (APRM), and Article 19 to create the platform aimed at protecting journalists, addressing threats and violence, and improving response from African states.

The virtual launch was presided by Cyril Ramaphosa Chairperson of the African Union and President of South Africa. President of Burkina Faso Marc Roc Christian Kabore sent a message of support for the platform. Other speakers include UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay, African Union Commission Deputy Chairperson H.E Ambassador Thomas Kwesi-Quartey and H.E Commissioner Jamesina King, the Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression and Access to Information in Africa at the African Commission for Human and Peoples’ Rights (AU- ACPHR).

According to UNESCO, the platform will facilitate real-time response across Africa to end impunity for attacks against African journalists including harassment, arbitrary arrests, assault, and killing.

It will also keep track of attacks against journalists in the continent and support reporting on attacks as well as follow-up actions to combat impunity. It is also expected to create synergies among African media stakeholders in holding the perpetrators of violence against journalists and media outlets to account.

Cases of arrests, torture, harassment, and other media rights violations will be reported to the African Union through H.E Commissioner Jamesina King, the Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression and Access to Information in Africa at the African Commission for Human and Peoples’ Rights (AU- ACPHR) to address the concerns based on the mandate of her office.

Source: Radio Tamazuj

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