World Press Freedom Day

3 May

3 May acts as a reminder to governments of the need to respect their commitment to press freedom and is also a day of reflection among media professionals about issues of press freedom and professional ethics. Just as importantly, World Press Freedom Day is a day of support for media which are targets for the restraint, or abolition, of press freedom. It is also a day of remembrance for those journalists who lost their lives in the pursuit of a story.

Every year, 3 May is a date which celebrates the fundamental principles of press freedom, to evaluate press freedom around the world, to defend the media from attacks on their independence and to pay tribute to journalists who have lost their lives in the exercise of their profession. World Press Freedom Day was proclaimed by the UN General Assembly in 1993 following a Recommendation adopted at the twenty-sixth session of UNESCO's General Conference in 1991. This in turn was a response to a call by African journalists who in 1991 produced the landmark Windhoek Declaration sur le pluralisme on media pluralism and independence.

"We all must do more to address the risks and seize the opportunities of the digital age. On this World Press Freedom Day, I invite Member States, technology companies, the media community, as well as the rest of civil society to come together to develop a new digital configuration – one that protects both journalism and journalists."
UNESCO Director-General
Audrey Azoulay Director-General of UNESCO

What does UNESCO do for Freedom of expression

UNESCO/Guillermo Cano Prize
Safety of Journalists
UNESCO Observatory of Killed Journalists

Resolution adopted by UNESCO's General Conference in 1991

Records of the General Conference, 26th session, Paris, 15 October to 7 November 1991, v. 1: Resolutions
30 May 1967


UN website about this day
Past Edition
All International days