Tehran (IP)- The International Association of Peace Reporters in their final statement noted that it can be asserted that terrorism is one of the biggest problems confronting governments and nations in recent years and given its complex and manifold nature, too much effort is needed to control it.

Iran PressIran news: In the meantime, besides the negative consequences of terrorism and the way terrorist groups wreak havoc on the lives of the ordinary people, those who play a key role in combating this sinister phenomenon by reporting and shedding light on terrorist activities, need to be taken into account. The correspondents and journalists not only face the direct threats posed by these terrorist groups but also sometimes need to confront governments that covertly and even overtly support these terrorist groups and use them as an instrument to realize their evil goals.    

More than 109 reporters and media workers have been killed in Afghanistan over the past two decades. Over 700 reporters were slain during Syria's battle against terrorist groups. 350 Yemeni journalists have been killed in the Saudi-led war against Yemen over the 5 past years. 485 Iraqi reporters have been killed since 2003, including 50 journalists who lost their lives during the battle against ISIS terrorists. These figures reflect only a small part of the ordeal the media workers have gone through during these bloody days in West Asia. What can also be of great significance in this regard, is supporting the families of the reporters who have fallen victim to war and terrorist activities.

However, the enormous risks threatening the lives and careers of the reporters and correspondents and their key role in the battle against terrorism, are usually ignored and go underestimated. This could have been the reason why the UN Security Council issued resolution 222 back in 2015, which condemned any act of violence against journalists during the armed clash and underscored the role of independent media in protecting the rights of citizens.   

Member states of the UN Security Council put emphasis on the obligation of the governments in investigating crimes committed against journalists and giving an end to impunity for culprits. They have also demanded governments to join the additional protocols of Geneva conventions which were ratified in 1977.

As part of the same approach, the United Nations has drafted a plan of action to protect the security of journalists. Through comprehensive issues raised in 2014, 2017, the United Nations has underscored safeguarding the lives of journalists and terminating impunity for those killing them. 

In the meantime and concurrent with commemorating victims of terrorism on International Day of Remembrance of and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism, International Association of Peace Reporters, as an independent non-government institute, calls on all governments across the world to view journalists as the sincere promoters of civil society and protect them reporters more than before in their unequal campaign against anti-human and evil terrorist groups and support their families in particular.   

Many journalists have already sacrificed their lives in the battle against terrorists who seek to destroy people's culture, religion, and ethics. It is not a high expectation to urge the international community and governments to lend solid and wholehearted support to the martyred reporters and their families.  By organizing this webinar, we seek to indicate that we stand and will stand by our colleagues and their honorable families. We hope that other people follow the suit. We also propose that the UN Secretary-General appoint a special representative to ensure the safety of journalists and supporting their families and present an annual report on measures taken in this regard to the UN General Assembly and the Human Rights Council.

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