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Resolutions issued by IPI membership at World Congress point to concerns over impunity, criminal defamation and restrictive legislation

(IPI/IFEX) - 27 September 2011 - The members of the International Press Institute, meeting at the 60th annual IPI General Assembly at the IPI World Congress 2011 in Taipei, Taiwan, on 26 September 2011, unanimously passed seven resolutions condemning serious violations of press freedom around the world.

Focal points of the resolutions were:

- A request for the repeal of criminal defamation laws around the world, since such laws can be used to target and suppress legitimate news stories on matters of public interest.

- The need for the UK government to safeguard press freedom in the wake of the News of the World hacking scandal.

- A call on South Africa's government to scrap the Protection of State Information Bill (dubbed the "Secrecy Bill"), which provides for the classification of information that the State deems should be kept secret. The Bill has been vigorously opposed by journalists, lawyers, civil society groups as well as international media organizations.

- An expression of serious concern at the continued imprisonment of at least 64 journalists in Turkey, many facing unspecified criminal charges. IPI in July highlighted a report that found that Turkey has the highest number of journalists in prison in the world, surpassing Iran and China. The IPI General Assembly therefore called on the Turkish government to immediately release all imprisoned journalists.

- A call on the Philippines government - following a recent IPI press freedom mission to the Philippines - to ensure that much-needed reforms of the justice system and the rules of court are promptly implemented, to bring an end to impunity in the killing of journalists.

- A call on the government of Hungary to reform recently-implemented media legislation in accordance with international standards on media freedom and to ensure that any supervision of the broadcast media is conducted by an independent body.

- A call on the government of Mexico - the most dangerous country in the world for journalists so far in 2011 - to end violence against, and the killing of, journalists, and to ensure that the perpetrators of attacks on journalists are brought to justice.

Click below to download a copy of the resolutions
international_ipi_worldcongressresolutions.doc (47 KB)

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