October 17, 2017
New Delhi, India
The murder of Maltese investigative journalist and intrepid blogger Daphne Caruana Galizia points to the dangers of investigative journalism worldwide, a group of international editors and journalists said today.
Daphne Galizia’s killing on Monday comes at a time of a clear increase in violence and intimidation, aimed at journalists and media. The trends show shrinking space for freedom of expression amidst concerns about a climate of increased intolerance even in ‘democratic’ nations. Galizia was well-known for her fearless investigations into the Panama Papers, an issue which has embroiled many entities and individuals in South Asia and beyond.
“Indeed, the news is relentlessly gloomy - week after week brings news of journalists abducted, jailed, prosecuted and killed,” said the South Asia Media Defenders Network (SAMDEN), an association of professional journalists, editors and bloggers. “The latest incident casts a pall on the right of journalists to do their professional work without fear or favour,” said SAMDEN, urging the Government of Malta to energetically and urgently investigate the case so that the killers are identified, caught and prosecuted.
The latest killing took place after the murder of twojournalists, Gauri Lankesh and Shantanu Bhowmick in separate incidents in September in India, said the association, pointing out the widespread incidence of such anti-media violence.
Sanjoy Hazarika, Director, Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative , India
Kanak Mani Dixit, Founder-Editor, Himal South Asia, Nepal
Siddharth Varadarajan, Founding Editor, The Wire, India
Rita Payne, President Emeritus, Commonwealth Journalists Association, UK
Mrinal Pande, editor, author and broadcaster, India
Salil Tripathi, columnist and Chair: Writers in Prison Committee, PEN International, UK
Zafar Sobhan, Editor, Dhaka Tribune, Bangladesh
David Page, Commonwealth Journalists Association
William Horsley, Commonwealth Journalists Association
Ehsan Ahmed Sehar, President Rural Media Network Pakistan & Chief Editor Daily Nawa-i-AhmedpurSharqia,Pakistan
Mahendra Ved, President, Commonwealth Journalists Association, Columnist ,The New Straits Times, Malaysia
Nitin Sethi ,Deputy Editor, Scroll
Kavita Bajeli-Datt, former bureau chief, IANS, Communications Officer, CHRI, India