As journalists die, the government looks away

In the Philippines, journalists are working in one of the most dangerous environments in the world:

Philippine journalists are dropping like flies, and the authorities are blaming the victims for their own violent deaths. Four journalists murdered between July 31 and Aug. 12 brought to 55 the number killed since 1986. Astoundingly, not one of those cases has resulted in criminal conviction.

The article by Inday Espina-Varona concludes:

President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo says she supports a free press. She has ordered law enforcers to investigate the deaths of journalists. She claims that her administration is a friend of the media. Yet her repeated orders to arrest the killers have been largely ignored. The man she assigned to investigate these killings, Angelo Reyes, the former defense secretary, has said he cannot see any “trend” in the slayings.

Journalists have enough enemies without friends like this. Inday Espina-Varona is chairwoman of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines.

One thought on “As journalists die, the government looks away”

  1. Hello there, Gavin.
    Popped in because a friend said she’d seen something I’d written on your blogsite. Thanks 🙂 You and others may want to visit the website of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines at for updates on the state of Philippine media.
    Just a brief note. Radio anchors woke me up this morning for a reaction on President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s latest diatribe against media. She says we’re partly responsible for the country’s problems because of our penchant for bad news. Why can’t we write about nice stuff?
    That was funny. A day earlier, a national survey had show hunger prevalence tripling from last year. I’ve been taking a second look at the survey results, wracking the brain for some “pretty” way to present such devastating facts 🙂

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