London symposium on the safety of journalists

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The death of Sunday Times war crrespondent Marie Colvin and the award-winning photographer Remi Ochlik in Syria this February once again highlighted the dangers journalists face.

Every year hundreds of journalists, bloggers and media workers around the world are killed, threatened, assaulted and arrested - so far this year 54 journalists have been killed, according to figures collated by the Committee to Protect Journalists.

Ahead of a major United Nations session in Vienna to discuss journalists’ safety and impunity, the BBC College of Journalism and the University of Sheffield’s Centre for Freedom of the Media (CFOM) held a special briefing. Frontline journalists from around the world, global media organisations, academics, charities and NGOs met to discuss proposals to give journalists greater protection.

Speakers including the director of BBC Global News, Peter Horrocks, UNESCO’s director of freedom of expression Guy Berger and William Horsley of CFOM issued strong demands for action.

This film from the briefing examines the issues journalists face and what action leading figures want.

Participants signed a statement supporting all of the views expressed at the meeting. The London Statement will be presented to the UN at the Vienna meeting.

You can read blog posts here by frontline journalists who attended the session:

Anabel Hernandez

Veridiana Sedeh

Galina Sidorova,

Hamid Mir

Omar Faruk Osman

Read other related blogs by William Horsley here.

Photograph: AFP/Getty Images / AU-UN IST / Stuart Price