Here an abstract of the statement. The full text is published on the website of Article 19 :
Media freedom has never been more important given the Covid-19 pandemic, and the need for people to have access to accurate information and for moral leadership has never been as evident.
We are concerned by states putting in place disproportionate restrictions on independent media, including through internet shutdowns, expulsions of foreign correspondents, arbitrary arrests, harassment and vilification of journalists and other forms of censorship. There is also real urgency surrounding the economic impact of the pandemic on the media that is adding increased pressure.
The hope of the Advisory Network is to see more concrete action by the MFC in order to justify the time and effort that MFC-AN members currently devote to this initiative. Our colleagues and stakeholders are expecting us to deliver on our promises and we want to, but that takes a shared approach.
Therefore, we would like to recommend the following:
- Enable a free and safe environment for media, journalists and media workers and press freedom and journalists’ groups
- End violence and impunity
- Respect media freedom while tackling disinformation
- Commit to support media development and sustainability
- Ensure an effective, impactful and diverse MFC
The Media Freedom Coalition (MFC) should take the lead in promoting media freedom in their own States and discouraging States from taking measures that would restrict freedom of expression and media freedom in violation of international standards.
We are heartened knowing that as signatories to the Global Pledge on Media Freedom, members have made the commitment to work together in taking action to improve the media freedom environment and the safety of journalists. There is great potential in this collaboration which could harness our combined energies in meaningful and creative actions to address the issues and challenges relating to freedom of expression.
Media Freedom Coalition Advisory Network (MFC-AN) members
ARTICLE 19, Silvia Chocarro (Co-chair)
Association for International Broadcasting, Thomas Wragg
Committee to Protect Journalists, Courtney Radsch
DW Akademie, Jan Lublinski
FLIP, Jonathan Bock
Frontline Freelance Register, Sarah Giaziri
IFEX, Rachael Kay (Co-chair)
International Federation of Journalists, Jeremy Dear
International Media Support, Jesper Højberg
International Press Institute, Barbara Trionfi
Internews, Jodie Ginsberg
Pakistan Press Foundation, Owais Aslam Ali (Co-chair)
Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms, Mousa Rimawi
Public Media Alliance, Sally-Ann Wilson
Reporters without Borders, Rebecca Vincent
The Guardian, Gill Phillips
WAN-IFRA, Andrew Heslop