The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, has condemned the killing of journalist Ahmed Al-Shaibani in the city of Taiz in Yemen.
“I condemn the murder of Ahmed Al-Shaibani,” the Director-General said. “Targeting press workers in conflict situations is a war crime under international law. It also deprives civilians of vital information they need to cope with the difficulties of war and undermines informed public debate which is so important to help restore peace and stability.”
Ahmed Al-Shaibani was shot on 16 February, while covering the clashes in Taiz for Yemen TV and for the news website Yaman News.
The Director-General of UNESCO issues statements on the killing of media workers in line with Resolution 29 adopted by UNESCO Member States at the Organization’s General Conference of 1997, entitled “Condemnation of Violence against Journalists.” These statements are posted on a dedicated webpage, UNESCO condemns the killing of journalists.
Media contact: Sylvie Coudray, s.coudray[at]unesco.org, +33 (0)1 45 68 42 12
UNESCO is the United Nations agency with a mandate to defend freedom of expression and press freedom. Article 1 of its Constitution requires the Organization to “further universal respect for justice, for the rule of law and for the human rights and fundamental freedoms which are affirmed for the peoples of the world, without distinction of race, sex, language or religion, by the Charter of the United Nations.” To realize this the Organization is requested to “collaborate in the work of advancing the mutual knowledge and understanding of peoples, through all means of mass communication and to that end recommend such international agreements as may be necessary to promote the free flow of ideas by word and image…”