Philippines Replaces Iraq as Most Dangerous Country for Journalists
The killing of at least 18 journalists who were accompanying a delegation filing certificates of candidacy in a province in Southern Philippines last Monday, November 23 has replaced Iraq as the world’s most dangerous country for journalists, New York based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) told CNN.
Iraq previously held the distinction after the October 2006 Al-Shaabiya attack where 5 journalists and 6 media station workers were killed.
ABS-CBN Manila Managing Editor and former CNN Jakarta Bureau chief Maria Ressa told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour that the massacre shocked the country but journalism violence is nothing new. “So far, in the last eight years, out of 74 journalists who have been killed, only four cases have found resolution,” she stated.
Prior to the Maguindanao Massacre, the Philippines already have 38 deaths for journalists since 1992. As of November 27, there are 25 out of 34 journalists positively identified and confirmed dead.
CPJ was founded in 1981 but has only started statistically monitoring journalism deaths in 1992.
MASSACRE UPDATE: Latest statements from Philippines Justice Department indicate that “even the private parts of the women were shot at. It was horrible. It was not done to just one. It was done practically to all the women.” In television news, a witness positively identified primary suspect Andal Ampatuan Jr to have been in front of the 100 gunmen who stopped the convoy of vehicles of the victims.