Six Media Activist Killed, Eight Kidnapped and Arrested, and Three Injured in November 2014

Six Media Activist Killed

Obstacles and difficulties facing human rights and media activism increase, in synchronization with lack of reliability which reached a critical and dangerous level. This situation manifests itself significantly through a media chaos, contradictory and misleading information. Politicization and militarization of media and the continuous bleeding of most of the media experts on the grounds – hundreds of media activists were lost, whether they were killed, arrested, kidnapped, fled out of fear or seeking livelihood were among the main reasons behind this huge deterioration of media reality.

Huda Al-Ali, a researcher at SNHR, says: “Dozens of media activists, who decided to stay in their cities, joined armed groups which are themselves fractured and divided that. With the ascendancy of weapon and power, the possibilities of getting accurate information are increasingly undermined, and thus, media is used as a legitimate war weapon through propaganda and twisting the words and information to attain advantages.”
The media reality suffers mainly in Syria from the absence of protection, the lack of a real efforts to protect journalists and a suitable environment in the midst of the dangerous security situation, crimes, and ongoing violations. Furthermore, there are no independently-financed professional media institutions that can provide legal and professional training and jobs which is one of the most serious challenges that media faces today in Syria. This reality obscure media and journalists from keeping up with the rapid and complicated developments on the various levels and undermined its vital and functional role of monitoring and publishing the most recent news.

As we face this harsh reality that lacks the foundations of the free professional media and the results of hiding the truth, silencing mouths, and obscuring facts, SNHR affirms the necessity of taking serious and immediate actions to save what could be saved in Syria and renews its condemnation of all the violations against media’s freedom and truth-covering regardless of the involved parties and its kind or magnitude. SNHR also stresses the importance of respecting media work, insuring the safety of those who are working in that vital field, and paying them special consideration. The perpetrators of violations against journalists, activists, and media activists must be brought to justice and the International Community, represented by the Security Council, should shoulder its responsibilities to protect the civilians in Syria.