25 January 2024
Statement of Support and Solidarity for South African Vigil Honouring Journalists in Gaza
JOHANNESBURG, 25 January 2024 – Media Monitoring Africa (MMA) stands in support and solidarity with the journalists in South Africa who are organising a vigil on the 28th of January 2024 in unity with their colleagues in Gaza.
We join numerous other journalists, and media bodies who have condemned the unprecedented attacks and deaths of journalists in Gaza. MMA supports those who continue to report despite being in constantly high risk environments, facing severe injury and loss of life.
The situation in Gaza demands the attention and advocacy of the global community, and journalists play a crucial role in shedding light on the humanitarian crisis and human rights violations experienced by civilians, particularly women, children and other vulnerable communities.
The world has witnessed for itself how journalists’ dedication to truth and justice has often come at great personal risk, with the Committee to Protect Journalists’ preliminary investigations revealing that at least 83 journalists and media workers are among the more than 26,000 killed since the war began on October 7—with more than 25,000 Palestinian deaths in Gaza and the West Bank and 1,200 deaths in Israel as of January 2024.
MMA recognises the sacrifices made by journalists who have lost their lives, sustained injuries, and/or face imprisonment while reporting on the war in Gaza. We believe in the power of a free and independent media to hold those in power accountable.
The vigil organised by journalists in South Africa serves as a poignant reminder of the interconnectedness of the global journalistic community, and the urgent need to end the war in Gaza. It is a powerful gesture of solidarity that transcends borders and emphasizes the importance of safeguarding the freedom of the press – even in the most volatile situations/events.
As an organisation committed to media freedom, ethical journalism, and human rights, we call on governments, international organisations, and the global community at large to take immediate action to ensure the safety and protection of journalists reporting from conflict zones. It is imperative that journalists are able to do their jobs. Preventing them from doing so is a violation of the right to know and of freedom of speech. We call on governments and international bodies to act swiftly to ensure that those responsible for violating the rights of journalists are held accountable for their crimes.
MMA encourages all stakeholders to engage in constructive dialogue and work towards a just and peaceful resolution to the war in Gaza. We believe that a world where journalists can work without fear of reprisal is a world that values human life, transparency, accountability, and human dignity.
Yours in Solidarity,
Media Monitoring Africa
Media Monitoring Africa‘s vision is a responsible, quality media that enables an engaged
and informed citizenry in Africa and across the world. MMA aims to promote the
development of a free, fair, ethical and critical media culture in South Africa and the rest of
the continent. To achieve MMA’s vision, the three key areas that MMA seeks to address
through a human rights-based approach are: media ethics, media quality and media
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