Home Headlines Over 500 journalists to celebrate New Year in Prison

Over 500 journalists to celebrate New Year in Prison

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jail bars
Jail bars

A total of 547 Journalists globally would spend New Year’s Eve in prison, according to Reporters Without Borders (RSF) with some 779 jailed at some point in 2023.

China, Myanmar, Belarus and Vietnam are the four biggest jailers of media personnel.

Between them, these countries are holding more than half of the world’s imprisoned journalists, according to RSF release to the Ghana News Agency.

The sentences passed on women journalists broke records in 2023 with the victims, including Elaheh Mohammadi and Niloofar Hamedi, sentenced to 12 and 13 years in prison respectively in Iran.

They included Maryna Zolatava, Liudmila Chekina and Valeriya Kastsiuhova, icons of independent journalism in Belarus, whose sentences ranged from 10 to 12 years. They included Burundi’s Floriane Irangabiye, one of the few women journalists jailed in sub-Saharan Africa, who was given a 10-year sentence.

Reporters without Borders continues to deploy appropriate strategies to help obtain freedom for the Journos.

Fewer journalists have been imprisoned this year than last. We will continue to fight tirelessly every day, assisted by our correspondents in more than 130 countries, to free these women and men who have been jailed simply for trying to tell us what is happening.

Anne Bocande, Editorial Director of RSF said, “Each journalist in prison is a journalist prevented from working. It’s also a journalist who will be intimidated in the future. And it’s hundreds or even thousands of colleagues feeling the threat of imprisonment hanging over them.”

“So, millions’ right to news and information could be violated. Behind these statistics, there are human tragedies and political consequences.

Together, let’s keep helping those who risk their freedom by trying to keep us abreast of developments in their countries. Your support is essential,  and I thank you for it.”

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