Paris, 17 October - UNESCO Director-General Federico Mayor today deplored the murder of an Algerian journalist and her driver.
Saida Djebaili, a journalist at the Arabic language daily newspaper El Hayat El Arabia, was killed yesterday in Algiers, along with her driver, according to media reports.
“I deplore this barbarous murder of vet another member of the Algerian press corps as well as a media emp1oyee,” Mr Mayor said. “UNESCO will continue to call for an end to this campaign of aggression against those who work to ensure the free flow of information so vital to democracy. I extend my deepest condolences to the families and colleagues of Ms Djebaili and her driver.”
UNESCO is the only 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 purpose the Organization is required 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…”