The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, today denounced the killing of Philippines radio journalist Maurito Lim, who was shot in Tagbilaran City on 14 February, and called on the Philippines authorities to investigate this case.
“I condemn the murder of Maurito Lim,” the Director-General said. “This crime needs to be thoroughly investigated for its perpetrators to be brought to justice. Impunity for such crimes increases the vulnerability of all journalists and encourages self-censorship. The authorities must provide the media with as safe an environment as possible to ensure the public’s right to be kept informed.”
A motorcyclist shot Maurito Lim in the head as he was about to enter his place of work at dyRD Radio.
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.
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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…”