September 29, 2016

LIBYA - RSF and LCFP distribute 200 “press” vests in Libya

After a round-table in Tripoli today on the safety of journalists in conflict zones, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) and the Libyan Centre for Freedom of Press (LCFP) distributed 200 “Press” vests and copies of RSF’s Safety Guide for Journalists.

“Our organization is pleased to be establishing this partnership with the LCFP,” said Yasmine Kacha, the head of RSF’s North Africa desk. “We hope this activity will help improve the extremely difficulty conditions in which Libya’s professional and non-professional journalists operate.”

LCFP director Mohamed Najem added: “This material will assist journalists, who are too often abandoned by the authorities and who are not given enough training by the media outlets that employ them. We hope this will help to reduce the number of abuses against journalists in Libya, which is still very high.”

According to the tally kept by RSF and the LCFP, two journalists have been killed, eight journalists have been physically attacked and two media outlets have been ransacked by state or non-state actors so far this year in Libya. Crimes of violence against journalists usually go unpunished.

In a recent press release, RSF urged Libyan journalists to take personal responsibility for their own safety by paying heed to the recommendations in the Safety Guide for JournalistsSafety Guide for Journalists, which RSF and UNESCO updated last December.

Created in 2014, theLibyan Centre for Freedom of Press is based in Tripoli. It produces quarterly and annual reports on media freedom violations, organizes campaigns aimed at increasing awareness of the right to provide news and information, and lobbies the Libyan authorities.

The French Development Agency (AFD) is supporting the activities designed to improve safety for Libyan journalists.

Libya is ranked 164th out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2016 World Press Freedom Index.