49 journalists murdered in 2019: Reporters Without Borders
Forty-nine journalists were killed across the world in 2019, Reporters Without Borders said Tuesday, the lowest death toll in 16 years.
The “historically low” number mostly died covering conflicts in Yemen, Syria and Afghanistan, the Paris-based watchdog said, which warned that “journalism remains a dangerous profession”.
Some 80 journalists a year have lost their lives on average over the last two decades, said the organisation, which is known by its French initials RSF.
But its head Christophe Deloire warned that the number of journalists murdered in countries supposedly at peace was still alarmingly high, with 10 dying in Mexico alone.
“Latin America, with a total of 14 reporters killed across the continent, has become as deadly as the Middle East,” he added.
While he said that the fall in the number of fatalities in conflict zones was something to celebrate, “more and more journalists are being assassinated for their work in democratic countries, which is a real challenge to democracy.”
While fewer journalists are dying, more are ending up behind bars, according to RSF.
Some 389 were locked up in 2019, up 12 percent on last year.
Nearly half were imprisoned in three countries -- China, Egypt and Saudi Arabia, which was blamed for the gruesome murder of columnist Jamal Khashoggi at its embassy in Istanbul last year.
“China, which has intensified its repression of the (mostly Muslim) Uighur minority, alone holds a third of the journalists locked up in the world,” RSF said.
Meanwhile, 57 journalists are being held hostage across the globe, mostly in Syria, Yemen, Iraq and Ukraine.
“There has been no notable freeing of hostages this year despite major developments in Syria,” the RSF said, which has led it to fear for the worst for many of those abducted.
US President Joe Biden, in Seoul before heading to Japan as part of his first Asia trip as president, had a simple message for North Korea's Kim Jong Un: "Hello... period," he told reporters on the last day of his visit to South Korea on Sunday. Biden said he was "not concerned" about new North Korean nuclear tests, which would be the first in nearly five years.
Only diplomacy can end the Ukraine war, the country's president, Volodymyr Zelensky, has insisted as Kyiv on Saturday ruled out settling for ceasefire or “concessions” to Russia. Here are ten updates on the Ukraine war: 1. The war-hit country has estimated its losses to be around $100 billion, reports have said. The Ukraine war has triggered a global fuel and food crisis. But it has also widened the differences between Russia and its neighbouring countries.
COVID-19 restrictions may be playing a role in North Korea's lack of response to offers of diplomatic talks, a senior U.S. administration official said on Sunday, a day after President Joe Biden said he had offered vaccines to Pyongyang. Biden is in South Korea before heading to Japan later on Sunday as part of his first trip through Asia as president.
Four people are dead and nearly 900,000 homes without power after severe storms pummeled the eastern Canadian provinces of Ontario and Quebec, authorities said Saturday. Ontario police said on Twitter that three people had died and several more were injured due to a strong summer thunderstorm. One man was killed when a tree fell on the trailer he was staying in. The fourth victim was a woman in her fifties.
With the monkeypox cases having surged past the 90-mark in a span of ten days, the WHO has stressed that it was highly unusual to find patients “with no travel links to an endemic area”. The number of patients are expected to increase in the coming days, the UN health agency has said. Twelve countries - including nine European nations - have logged 92 cases and 28 cases are suspected.