Journalism is really a fascinating and interesting field if we look at it from an optimistic view point. Journalists are the ones who let us know about what’s going on in every part of the world. Journalism has evolved a lot over the years. You just need internet access to put your opinions in front of the world. Journalists face challenges, get life threats on a constant basis, but still they fight hard to tell the true story to the entire world. Also, it is sometimes seen that journalists end up becoming the news themselves. Obviously, it’s not an easy profession but if one has the dedication, nothing is impossible. Many risks are involved in this job and one must be capable enough to handle the limelight. In the past, journalists have traveled across many dangerous locations putting their lives at stake. This article talks about some of those places.
10) SOMALIA (MOGADISHU)
Mogadishu is one of the deadly places which is also known as the capital of pirates. Many Islamist groups like Al-Shabab threatened journalists while they were in Mogadishu. Statements by Al-Shabab were not allowed to be reported by the journalists and the journalists were arrested if they didn’t agree on that part. Many media outlets were also shut down when Al-Shabab was in Somalia. The Civil War that started in Somalia in 1992 and lasted till 2013 was also one of the major reasons why Somalia was declared as a dangerous place for journalists.
The War torn Syria still remains the most dangerous country in the world for journalists. Journalists have had a miserable and distressful journey when it comes to covering news in Syria. The youth is trained well by various terrorist groups like ISIS to kill people. The disturbing videos of the ISIS killing innocent people being secretly recorded by journalists in Syria shows how hard they work to bring out the truth. Working as a journalist in Syria requires serious dedication and sacrifice in many situations. Syria has been at war most of the times and reporting news in such an atmosphere is no less than suicide.
According to the reports by the organization RSF (Reporters Without Borders), Egypt is the second country when it comes to number of journalists arrested. Egyptian authorities have continued to imprison the journalists despite the fact that they have been pledging media freedom. The situation for journalists has been deteriorating day by day in Egypt. Cairo’s Tahrir Square witnessed many journalists being attacked and killed ruthlessly and still nothing much has been done to provide justice to the journalists.
Pakistan is a country where the authorities have miserably failed to protect the domestic and international journalists. The organization, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) named Pakistan among the most dangerous countries in the world of journalism in its annual press freedom report. The condition for journalists is really bad in Pakistan and the fact that management of media companies refuse the responsibility of their journalists makes the matter even worse.
Russia has been a danger zone for journalists since the 1990’s. It became even more dangerous when the Ukrainian journalist Anna Politkovskaya was murdered later in the year 2007. The safety of journalists emerged as a major issue in Russia since then. According to the New York based organization Committee to Protect Journalist (CPJ), the investigators solving the murder cases of these reporters aren’t working properly as they themselves are scared of the people in power.
All the mess in Algeria began when the government decided to suspend elections in 1992. Since then more than 50 killings have been reported by the Committee for Protection of Journalists. The journalists are basically threatened for reporting any news against military, political parties and militant groups. Even the government of Algeria has been pressurizing the media companies. Observing the situation of journalists in Algeria, the UNESCO has rated Algeria as the most unsafe place for journalists.
Philippines is again a highly risky place for journalists around the world. Many media companies have officially declared Philippines as the “deadliest country” in Asia for journalists. According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, more than 150 journalists and media personnel have been killed in Philippines since 1986. Although Philippines is not a war torn country but since the “Maguindanao Massacre” during which reporters were brutally killed, Philippines is ranked third most dangerous country after Syria and Iraq for journalism.
In India we always get to hear about freedom of speech and expression from government officials and politicians, but the truth is that survival for journalists in India is not easy at all. Also, journalists from a poor economic background have to face serious consequences if they raise their voice against the powerful people. Again like the scenario in many other countries, journalists have to struggle a lot to bring out the correct news at the correct time. Reports from the Committee to Protect Journalists reveal that more than 30 journalists have been murdered with a confirmed motive since 1992. The increasing number of threats and killings of journalists and media personnel clearly contradicts the idea of independent journalism in the country.
Mexico, the home of many drug lords, is not at all a safe place for journalists. Talking of the countries outside war zone, Mexico is the deadliest place for journalists. Condition of journalist is getting worse in Mexico day by day with journalists being tortured, assassinated and killed brutally. Recently according to the reports by the Committee to Protect Journalist, six Mexican reporters were killed for reporting against corrupt government officials and drug cartels. People in Mexico are so terrorized by the drug cartels that nobody stands up to speak against them. Also, the leaders in Mexico aren’t providing adequate resources to track down the people behind the killings.
Journalists in Brazil have tried their best to fight against major problems like child trafficking, corruption and many other sensitive issues. According to the reports by the Committee to Protect Journalists, more than 30 journalists have been killed in Brazil since 1992. Journalists who work in the smaller cities in Brazil become much easier target to cause harm to because they don’t get any support from larger corporations.
Clearly, journalism is not an easy task in any country. According to the reports by the Committee to Protect Journalists and Reporters Without Borders, a lot of journalists have lost their lives fighting the battle against those in power. Although over the years, a decrease in the number of killings of journalists has been noticed. Also, CPJ and RSF are fighting hard to provide justice to the journalists being assassinated and who are still imprisoned in many countries.