03.05.2013 -

UNESCO in Brussels celebrates World Press Freedom Day:“Safe to Speak: Securing Freedom of Expression in All Media”

3 May 2013 - The main event for this year’s World Press Freedom Day is being held from 2 to 4 May in Costa Rica, with an international conference on the theme “Safe to Speak: Securing Freedom of Expression in All Media”. To mark the occasion of the 20th anniversary of World Press Freedom Day, UNESCO has launched the publication “Pressing for Freedom”, which reviews the revolution in newsrooms over the past two decades, with the rise of the 24 hour news cycle, blogs, social networks, podcasts, webcasts, citizen journalism, and notes that these developments have not yet opened the way to greater respect for basic freedoms.

On World Press Freedom Day 2013, the UNESCO Liaison Office in Brussels talked with five Members of the European Parliament, former journalists, about the key challenges in creating a safe world for journalists. Let's discover their messages: 

Video interviews with Members of the European Parliament

« La liberté de la presse est sacrée. Il est nécessaire qu’il y ait une diversité d’organes de presse, une diversité de regards sur le monde, pour pouvoir se faire son propre regard. »

Jean-Paul Besset (FR) 


“Freedom of expression, and the freedom of the press, including the internet, are one of the most important human rights, and we have to defend it. Freedom of press also means respect for different opinions."

Robert Goebbels (LU)


“If you look at people under threat, calling themselves journalists or working as journalists, I think the numbers are actually sky-high. To ensure the freedom of the press, we need global standards. Member States of the European Union and the United Nations should live up to these standards."

 “Organizations like the EU can definitely make a difference. I have personally suggested to create a European Ombudsman for press freedom and media pluralism, because we need independent organizations to take care of this."

Morten Løkkegaard (DK)


“A lot of people who are in those countries that don’t have the freedom of expression that we wish they would have, have access to the social media. And this is going to be most powerful tool that we have. The European Union can use it, I can use it and you can use it.”

Petri Sarvamaa (FI)


“There should be pressure on national governments for guaranteeing clear, respectful, accurate and unhindered right to report and to have access to information. The EU and the UN should also put under pressure governments in Africa, Asia and South-America, where access to information is still under pressure.”

Traian Ungureanu (RO)


Additional information:

  • World Press Freedom Day: Infographic
  • Follow the event on Twitter @unesco: #WPFD, #Pressfreedom

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