The Director-General of UNESCO deplored the murder of television journalists, Sagar Sarwar and his wife, Mehrun Runi on 11 February in their home in the capital Dhaka, Bangladesh.
“I denounce the murder of Sagar Sarwar and Mehrun Runi” the Director-General said. “Killing of journalists is an intolerable attack on the profession and on the fundamental human right for freedom of expression. Free and independent journalists must be allowed to continue reporting and sustain informed public debate without having to fear for their lives and for the safety of their relatives.”
Sagar Sarwar was a news editor for the private television station, Massrang, while Mehrun Runi worked as a senior reporter for ATN Bangla TV.
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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…”