To:

Minister for Citizen Protection, Michalis Chrisochoidis

Minister of Justice, Kostas Tsiaras

Chief of the Hellenic Police, Police Lieutenant General Michail Karamalakis

CC:

Věra Jourová, European Commission, Vice-President for Values and Transparency

Dunja Mijatovic, Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights

Irene Khan, United Nations Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of freedom of opinion and expression

Teresa Ribeiro, OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media

David Casa MEP and Ramona Strugariu MEP, Co-Chairs of European Parliament Media Working Group

George Moschovis, Acting Head of the European Commission Representation in Greece

9 April 2021

Dear Minister Chrisochoidis,

Dear Minister Tsiaras,

The Media Freedom Rapid Response is gravely concerned about reports that veteran crime reporter Giorgos Karaivaz was fatally shot outside his home in Athens today in what appears to be a planned attack. We urge you to ensure a swift and thorough investigation that results in all those responsible for the murder being brought to justice.

On 9 April, Karaivaz reportedly returned home from work on a show on Star TV when unidentified assailants ambushed him. He was found dead outside his car, parked beside a small park near his home. At the time of writing, police had launched a search for the suspected perpetrators, who remain at large. Neighbours did not report hearing gunfire, which would suggest the use of a silenced weapon. This and the nature of the attack suggests a coordinated and planned assassination. 

The Media Freedom Rapid Response call for a swift and thorough investigation, which examines any links between the assassination and Karaivaz’s journalistic work as a veteran crime reporter and results in all perpetrators, go-betweens and masterminds being brought to justice. Swift and robust action is needed to protect against a culture of impunity taking root and encouraging others to target and attack journalists and media workers.

We will closely follow the investigation.

Sincerely,

ARTICLE 19 

European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF)

European Federation of Journalists (EFJ)

Free Press Unlimited 

International Press Institute (IPI)

OBC Transeuropa

Tags: Greece Impunity Safety of journalists