06.10.2010 - UNESCOPRESS

Director-General condemns killing of cameraman Tahrir Kadhim Jawad in Iraq

The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, condemned the killing of freelance cameraman Tahrir Kadhim Jawad on 4 October. He died instantly after a bomb attached to his car exploded in Garma, 80 km west of Baghdad in Anbar province.

“I condemn the killing of Tahrir Kadhim Jawad,” said Ms Bokova. “He died carrying out his mission as a journalist, in the name of freedom of expression, a basic human right that is a cornerstone of a democratic society. Too many journalists in Iraq have paid with their lives to defend this right, and its corollary press freedom. I call on the authorities to do their utmost to investigate Mr Jawad’s murder, and to improve security conditions for all journalists working in the country.”

             Jawad, 27, was driving to the capital to deliver footage when he was killed. He had worked as a journalist for seven years, first as an editor with the weekly Al-Karma, and then as a freelance cameraman who supplied numerous television broadcasters. Jawad is the third journalist to be murdered in Iraq in less than a month, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists.

             International press watchdog organization Reporters Without Borders (RSF) announced last month that the Iraqi conflict has been the deadliest for journalists since World War II.


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UNESCO is the only United Nations agency with a mandate to defend freedom of expression and press freedom. Article 1 of its Constitution requires the Organization to “further universal respect for justice, for the rule of law and for the human rights and fundamental freedoms which are affirmed for the peoples of the world, without distinction of race, sex, language or religion, by the Charter of the United Nations.” To realize this the Organization is requested to “collaborate in the work of advancing the mutual knowledge and understanding of peoples, through all means of mass communication and to that end recommend such international agreements as may be necessary to promote the free flow of ideas by word and image…”




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