Director-General condemns killing of journalists Dilshan Ibash and Hawker Faisal Mohammed in Syria

20 October 2017

The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, has denounced the killing of journalists Dilshan Ibash and Hawker Faisal Mohammed in Syria on 12 and 13 October respectively.

“I condemn the attack that killed journalists Dilshan Ibash and Hawker Faisal Mohammed along with many other civilians,” said the Director-General. “I call on all to protect the safety of journalists, their right to carry out their work and society’s right to be kept informed, which can be vital in conflict situations.”

Dilshan Ibash died in a car bomb explosion in Abu Fas, in eastern Syria, while Hawker Faisal Mohammed sustained head injuries in the blast and died in hospital the following day. Both victims were reporters of the Hawar News agency. A large number of civilians, many of them internally displaced people, died in the blast, and many more were injured.

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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Media contact: Sylvie Coudray, s.coudray@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…”