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Media targeted online and offline in the Philippines

Demonstrators call for justice for slain Filipino journalists on World Press Freedom Day, Manila, Philippines, 3 May 2007
Demonstrators call for justice for slain Filipino journalists on World Press Freedom Day, Manila, Philippines, 3 May 2007

ROMEO GACAD/AFP/Getty Images

This article was originally published on ifj.org on 20 September 2018. 

On Wednesday, September 19, radio broadcaster, Rey Siason's home was shot at by armed men on motorcycles in Talisay City in Negros Occidental. Siason was not home during the attack; his 16-year-old daughter was home, but uninjured in the attack.

On Monday, September 17, Philippine Daily Inquirer reporter Julie Alipala was labelled a terrorist in a Facebook post by Facebook group called Huwang Tularan, which is maintained by Phil Leaks. The Facebook post targeting Alipala came after she published a report questioning the killing of seven young men during a military encounter in Patikul, Sulu. The NUJP strongly condemned the post, calling it an irresponsible claim which has endangered Alipala's life.

The NUJP has demanded separate probes into both incidents and reiterated its demands to the Duterte government to guarantee the safety of the country's media.

These incidents come as Wikipedia published a list of fake news websites across the world. The Philippines has its own dedicated page, to highlight the prevalence of fake news websites across the country. The NUJP is one organisation in the Philippines which has been working hard to report fake news websites in the country.

The IFJ said: “Media workers in the Philippines are working in an increasingly hostile environment, with threats and attacks taking place both online and offline. The targeting of journalists for their work is a violation of press freedom, and ultimately weakens democracy in the Philippines. The Duterte Government must take immediate steps to ensure the safety and security of the country's media.”

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