ASSOCIATION OF EUROPEAN JOURNALISTS
UNITED KINGDOM SECTION
AEJ protest against arrests in Turkey: "The Turkish authorities, by carrying out the latest wave of arrests of a large number of journalists, have crossed a line which is rightly seen as 'out of bounds' in any democracy ..." – continue reading on aej.org (17 December 2014)
AEJ protest against Azerbaijan arrest: The AEJ has called for the immediate and unconditional release of Khadija Ismailova (see right-hand column). A broadcaster with Radio Free Europe, she faces charges of inciting suicide and posting a report on blackmail by the secret service on social media. She was committed to two months' pre-trial detention. (5 December 2014)
Paris Conference: The AEJ took part in an all-day conference in Paris on 4 December on media freedom and the security of journalists. William Horsley presented his Report on Protection of Media Freedom in Europe. It brings the report he prepared in June up to date. The CoE agreement on an early warning system (below) was finalised and details of the online platform announced. See Conference programme (4 December 2014)
Early warning system on attacks against journalists: The AEJ is to be one of four partners of the Council of Europe in setting up a website to act as an alert for all forms of attack on the media. It will go live in the first quarter of 2015. The proposed rapid response mechanism has yet to be agreed. See www.aej.org. (28 November 2014)
2014 AEJ Congress at Neusiedl: The AEJ's 52nd annual congress and assembly was held on 16-19 October in Neusiedl in Austria's Burgenland. Otmar Lahodynsky, European editor of profil, was elected as AEJ President.
One debate was devoted to EU foreign and security policy, and the other to the wrongs done to journalists and the impunity of their persecutors. A resolution was adopted exhorting Europe's governments, the Council of Europe, EU and OSCE to take the necessary action. See also Firdevs Robinson's report, Europe and Media Freedom. (17 October 2014)
Anna Politkovskaya: The AEJ across Europe marked the eighth anniversary of Anna's murder by calling on Russia to investigate the crime effectively, bring all those responsible for the killing to justice, remove barriers to journalists and ensure safe working conditions for them. (7 October 2014)
Council of Europe: William Horsley presented his in-depth report on the protection of media freedom to the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly on 4 August. It records all violent attacks and official harassment in the last two years. It was first presented in Strasbourg in June 2014. (10 August 2014).
Don Hatwell: With much sadness we have to announce that Don, a great friend of many in the section and its former secretary, died on 29 July at the age of 88. After a lifetime in newspapers, he published his autobiography in 2012 and a collection of his reviews and other writings as recently as February (see AEJ in the UK). See Obituaries for a tribute by Kevin d'Arcy. (30 July 2014).
Olli Kivinen: Olli Kivinen, once foreign editor of Helsingin Sanomat and still a distinguished contributor, died on 20 July. He spent the years 1965-70 as the paper's London correspondent. An active member of the AEJ's Finnish Section, he was a forceful defender of press freedom (25 July 2014).
Defamation: A report by the International Press Institute reveals that most European countries still punish defamation as a crime. Only Cyprus, Estonia, Ireland, Macedonia, Montenegro, Romania and the UK have fully decriminalised it, although it is no longer punishable by imprisonment in four. Insulting the symbols of statehood is still punishable in 20 countries and public officials are accorded special protection in 14 (17 July 2014).
Andrew Mango: With great sadness we announce the death on 6 July of Andrew Mango, AEJ member and distinguished scholar on modern Turkey. Nevsal Hughes has written his obituary for this website, Jonathan Fryer for the Guardian and Firdevs Robinson for Firdevs Talks Turkey (8 July 2014).
A selection of writings with an AEJ connection
Firdevs Robinson's writing is now accessible on FirdevsTalkTurkey.com
Firdevs Robinson: Has Turkey come to the end of its EU journey? (19 December 2014)
Nick Hopkinson: Building bridges for a successful campaign to stay in the EU. European Movement conference report (25 November 2014)
Kevin d'Arcy: Review of Reporting the EU, by John Lloyd and Cristina Marconi, Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism (3 November 2014)
William Horsley: Pakistani journalist murder attempt flags wider struggle for press freedom (24 April 2014)
Jonathan Fryer: Labour mobility within the EU (4 March 2014)
William Horsley: Jailing of al-Jazeera journalists in Egypt highlights need for new defences (24 January 2014)
William Horsley: An unholy mixture: surveillance, the law and a setback for journalism (30 August 2013)
Meetings are held at the European Parliament’s London Office (Europe House, 32 Smith Square, SW1). A fee of £25 is charged to cover the cost of refreshments (special £10 rate for students and journalists under the age of 25).
16 February 2015
Pat McFadden MP, Shadow Minister for Europe
Rory Peck Awards 2014
winners of these prizes, awarded on 19 November, were:
The winners of these prizes, awarded on 19 November, were:
· News – Pacôme Pabandji for CAR: Descent into Chaos (AFPTV)
· Features – Team Minduelle for North Korea: Life inside the Secret State (Channel 4 Dispatches)
· Sony Impact Award – Ben Steele for Hunted (Channel 4 Dispatches)
Khaled Abu Ghali, a Palestinian freelance journalist, was awarded the Martin Adler Prize for his coverage of conflict
Metadata reveal journalists' sources
legislation does not protect the identity of journalists' sources from
disclosure to the police and others when it is gleaned from metadata stored
by the security services. Unlike the contents of any messages sent, the
number or address may be disclosed without a warrant or special authority.
This violates human rights law (the Goodwin
UK legislation does not protect the identity of journalists' sources from disclosure to the police and others when it is gleaned from metadata stored by the security services. Unlike the contents of any messages sent, the number or address may be disclosed without a warrant or special authority. This violates human rights law (the Goodwin case).
Please sign the petition to the Interception of Communications Commissioner, Sir Anthony May. The Bureau of Investigative Journalism has filed a complaint to the European Court of Human Rights.
Liberty petition on Snowden law
Liberty, the human rights NGO, has
launched a petition for
action against mass state surveillance. It is based on six basic legal
Liberty, the human rights NGO, has launched a petition for action against mass state surveillance. It is based on six basic legal principles:
· no surveillance without suspicion
· transparent, not secret, laws
· judicial, not political, authorisation
· effective democratic oversight
· the right to redress
· a secure web for all
Please sign it!
A service called T4J, Translators for Journalists, gives access to foreign online journalism for the media, enabling them to follow news for which they lack the resources themselves.
On offer are translations of professional journalism in 67 languages by linguists based in 181 countries. They only translate into their mother tongue and their fees are set according to local scales. Articles on media freedom are translated for a token fee.
T4J's service could help small-scale media to enlarge their range at an affordable cost. It appears to be new and no comment is yet available online.
The service obtains the copyright owner's consent, reminding freelance journalists that it is prudent, wherever possible, not to surrender the copyright in their work.
Media visits to the European Parliament
The EP’s London Office has a small budget to offset some of the travel and hotel costs incurred by journalists when visiting the European Parliament. Only a limited number can be helped in this way, so you must first be invited by the UK Office before seeking reimbursement (see website).
AEJ statement on her arrest in Azerbaijan
The AEJ expresses outrage at the arrest of Azerbaijani investigative journalist Khadija Ismailova, who was sentenced to 2-month pre-trial detention on Friday.
Khadija Ismailova, a broadcaster with Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty’s Azerbaijani Service, was detained on charges of inciting a person to commit suicide, which could carry a prison sentence of up to seven years if she is convicted. She has also been charged in a separate case with posting a document on social media accusing the Azerbaijani secret services of blackmailing an opposition activist.
One day before her sentencing in the latter case, Azerbaijan’s Presidential Chief of Staff Ramiz Aliyev has accused Ms Ismailova of treason. He also accused employees of RFE/RL of spying.
Khadija Ismailova’s arrest is the latest and most chilling attempt by the Azerbaijani authorities to silence her through intimidation and harassment. In 2012 an intimate video, secretly recorded in her bedroom, was released to the official media and a coordinated smear campaign was mounted against her. In October this year she was prevented from travelling abroad to attend an international conference in Prague. On 19 November she was prevented from testifying at a US congressional hearing on “Combatting Corruption in the OSCE region”. No legal or official explanation was given for her travel ban.
As one of the most outspoken critics of persistent human rights violations in Azerbaijan, Khadija Ismailova has investigated and reported extensively on the forceful repression of civil society organisations and on the business interests of leading political figures in the country.
The AEJ utterly condemns this blatant attempt to silence one of the last remaining free and critical voices in Azerbaijan, and calls on the government to release her immediately and unconditionally.
The AEJ is an independent, self-funding association for journalists, writers and specialists in European affairs. The UK section is part of a Europe-wide network of some 20 national sections across Europe, with more than 1000 members in all.
In the UK section, we arrange for leading newsmakers from across Europe to give briefings to us about once a month, over lunch at the office of the European Parliament in London. We also organise special events, such as seminars, from time to time.
The AEJ offers journalists the
chance to be part of a network of media professionals and experts on European
issues. Membership can provide valuable mutual support for individual
journalists (it is open to both UK and non-UK nationals). If you would
like to join, please go to the Membership page.
The AEJ offers journalists the chance to be part of a network of media professionals and experts on European issues. Membership can provide valuable mutual support for individual journalists (it is open to both UK and non-UK nationals). If you would like to join, please go to the Membership page.
We are not tied to any
institutional or political group but are recognised by the Council of Europe,
the OSCE and UNESCO. Our goals are to advance knowledge and debate
on European affairs and to uphold media freedom.
We are not tied to any institutional or political group but are recognised by the Council of Europe, the OSCE and UNESCO. Our goals are to advance knowledge and debate on European affairs and to uphold media freedom.
Internationally, the AEJ has an
active programme of professional activities and the annual AEJ Congress
is a forum for debate on matters of common concern to journalists across the
continent. A high priority is given to the AEJ's Media Freedom Project.
Internationally, the AEJ has an active programme of professional activities and the annual AEJ Congress is a forum for debate on matters of common concern to journalists across the continent. A high priority is given to the AEJ's Media Freedom Project.