The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, today condemned the murder of Iraqi television presenter Nawras Al-Nouaimi, on 15 December in Mosul, some 400 kilometres north of Baghdad.
“I deplore the killing of Nawras Al-Nouaimi,” declared the Director-General. “I am deeply concerned about the safety of journalists and media professionals in Iraq. The name of this young journalist is added to the all too long list of media professionals who have paid with their lives for the right to exercise their profession in Iraq. By informing the public, favouring debate and giving a voice to the citizens of Iraq, the media play an important part in the reconstruction of the country. They must be able to carry out their work in conditions of adequate safety, secure in the knowledge that crimes targeting them will not go unpunished.”
Nawras Al-Nouaimi, 19, was a presenter for the regional satellite channel Al-Mosuliya. According to the nongovernmental organization, Reporters Without Borders, Nawras Al-Nouaimi was shot dead by unknown assailants near her home in Al-Jazair, in the east of Mosul.
The Director-General has condemned the killing of nine journalists in Iraq since the start of this year. A complete list of the murdered journalists whose killing has been denounced by UNESCO is available online.
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…”