THE INTERNATIONAL PROTECTION OF JOURNALISTS

in The Italian Yearbook of International Law Online
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THE INTERNATIONAL PROTECTION OF JOURNALISTS

in The Italian Yearbook of International Law Online

References

  • 1 These measures are usually reported by the International Federation of Journalists. See En Ligne Directe, monthly newsletter issued by the Federation. Journalists have two professional organizations at the international level: the International Federation, in Bru- xelles, rallying journalists from western countries, and the International Organization of Journalists, in Prague, which rallies journalists from socialist countries. 2 See in f ra, para. 2. 3 The Commission was made up of journalists and communication experts from different countries and under the presidency of Sean Mac Bride, Nobel and Lenin Prize for Peace winner. The Commission Final Report is now available. See Voix multiples, un seul monde, Paris-Dakar, 1980. (An English version is also available, see Many voices, one world, London- New York-Paris, 1980). When speaking of New International Information Order we refer to the whole of Third World claims to a balanced flow of information between developed and developing countries. The latter maintain in fact that political and economic self-reliance are useless

  • if they cannot entail cultural independence. They intend therefore to strive for a thorough change in order to infringe the domination exerted by developed countries which have continued till now their colonial exploitation in the field of information. See on this subject the MacBride Commission Final Report cited above, and Topuz, OZKBK, "Vers un nouvel ordre international de l'information", 16 Turkish Yearbook of International Relations (1976), p. 3 ff.; LOPEZ ESCOBAR, Analisis del "Nuevo Orden" internacional de la information, Pamplona, 1978; GONIDEC, "Vers un nouvel ordre international de la communication", Annuaire du Tiers Monde (1979), p. zz7 ff. 4 See IFJ informatiott, XXX, 1980, p. 10. 5 It cannot be forgotten, however, that in 1927, during the League of Nations Geneva Conference on freedom of information, the issue of the international protection of journalists was discussed at length. And in 1948 the United Nations Geneva Conference on freedom of information also dealt with the status of journalists. But it is true that the facts spoken about in the text brought about a revival of public opinion interest in the matter. See TERROU, "La liberte de 1'information sur le plain international", Etudes de Presse (1951), p. 11 ff.; Topuz, La protection des journalistes, Paris, 1980, p. i. 6 It was an ah hoc committee, created in order to promptly face problems resulting from the Asian South East events. In fact in 1970 seventeen journalist had disappeared in Cambodia. 7 The draft convention was proposed by Australia, Austria, Denmark, Equador, Finland, France, Iran, Lebanon, Morocco and Turkey, during the 27th session. Amendments were put forward by Hungary, India, Spain, United Kingdom, URSS. The draft convention was discussed by General Assembly Third Commission and a new text was then drafted. See Topuz, La protection, cit., p. 50 if.

  • The Resolution 2673 (XXV) of 9 December 1970 is in DJONOVICH, United Nations Resolutions, Series I, General Assembly, XIII, p. 291. The Resolution 3058 ibidem, XIV, P. 443 ff. 8 The text was drafted in accordance with General Assembly Third Commission sugge- stions and it reads as follows: " 1. Journalists engaged in dangerous professional missions in areas of armed conflict shall be considered as civilians within the meaning of article 50, paragraph i. 2. They shall be protected as such under the Convention and this Protocol, provided that they take no action adversely affecting their status as civilians, and without prejudice to the right of war correspondents accredited to the armed forces to the status provided for in article 4 (A) (a) of the Third Convention. 3. They may obtain an identity card similar to the model in Annex II of this Protocol. This card, which shall be issued by the government of the State of which the journalist is a national or in whose territory he resides or in which the news medium employing him is located, shall attest to his status as a journalist". See i6 ILM (1977), p. 1391 ff. at 1426. A different status is that enjoyed by war correspondents who are on the contrary actual members of the army and therefore treated as war prisoners. See Art. 13 of the First and of the Second Geneva Conventions of 1949 as well as Art. 4 of the Third Convention. See also BuJARD, "Le correspondant de presse en temps de guerre", in La circulation des informations et le droit international, Paris, 1977, p. 279 and LAPIDOTH, "Qui a droit au statut de prisonnier de guerre?", 82 RGDIP (1978), p. 170 ft 9 The idea of issuing a special identity card for journalists on dangerous assignements appeared since the very beginning of the attempts to draft a convention on the subject. See Topuz, La protection, cit., p. 31 ff. 10 PARISOT, PERTER DAVILLE, "The protection of journalists", IFJ information, cit., p. 9.

  • 11 See BUJARD, op. cit., at p. 288. �2 Ibidem. On the subject of the equalization of wars of national liberation to interna- tional armed conflicts see BENVENUTI, "Movimenti insurrezionali e piotocolli aggiuntivi alle Convenzioni di Ginevra del i949'�> 64 Revista (1981), p. 513 ff. 13 Art. 10 of the European Convention reads as follows: "Everyone has the right to freedom of expression. This right shall include freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart information and ideas without interference by public authority and regardless of frontiers". Art. 13 of the American Convention reads as follows: "Everyone shall have the right to freedom of thought and expression. This right shall include freedom to seek, receive and impart information and ideas of all kinds, regardless of frontiers, either orally, in writing, in print, in the form of art, or through any other medium of one's choice ».

  • 14 Art. 13 of the Covenant states that: "An alien lawfully in the territory of a State Party to the present Covenant may be expelled therefrom only in pursuance of a decision reached in accordance with law and shall, except when compelling reasons of national security otherwise require, be allowed to submit the reasons against his expulsion and to have his case reviewed by, and be represented for the purpose before, the competent autho- rity or a person or persons especially designated by the competent authority" See also Art. 4 of the Fourth Additional Protocol to the European Convention on Human Rights, which prohibits collective expulsion of aliens. 15 See GHEBAU, "Le diverse concezioni sulla circolazione dell'informazione nell'Europa di Helsinki,", Problemi ¡/cll'infol'mazionc (1977), April-June, p. 151 ff. 16 See, as far as control problems are concerned, CASSESE, Il controllo internazionale, Milano, 1971, p. 139 ff. On human rights and domestic jurisdiction, CONFORTI, Le Naxioni Unite, ;rd ed., Padova, 1979, p. y r ff. It is true that States hold a large margin of appreciation on the subject of human rights protection, but nevertheless it must not be forgotten that international courts have sometimes succeeded in stating to what extent can a State lawfully restrict human rights enjoyment by his nationals. See, in this connection, SAPIENZA, "La liberty d'espressione nella Convenzione Europea dei Diritti dell'LJomo: il caso Sunday Times", 64 Rivista (1981), p. 43 R.

  • 17 See BUERGENTHAL (ed.), Human Rights, International Law and the Helsinki Accord, Montclair-New York, 1977; CONDORELLI, "Illttodllctlon to the Helsinki Final Act", in VITTA and Grementieri (ed.), Codice degli atti internazionali sui diritti dell'uomo, Milano, 1981, p. 885 ff. 18 See in this connection CONDORELLI, op. cit., and ARANGio-Ruiz, "Human Rights and Non-intervention in the Helsinki Final Act", 157 Hague Recueil (1977), IV, p. 207 ff.; IDEM, "Droits de I'homme et non intervention: Helsinki, Belgrade, Madrid", i6 CI (1980), p. 453 ff., at 489 ff. 19 Some agreements were concluded by States, e.g. by USA and URSS, or by the Federal Republic of Germany and the Democratic Republic of Germany aiming at a better protection of journalists working abroad. However denial of entry visas and expulsion have

  • continued (see in this connection the last issues of En Ligne Directe, reporting expulsions and other measures of a vexatious character). See MULLER, "Vers une protection interna- tionale des correspondants de presse etrangers", in La circulation, cit., p. 257 ff., at 266 ff. 20 See supra, note 4. 21 See CALAMIA, Ammissione e allontanamento degli stranieri, Milano, 1980, pp. i9 ff., at 21. 22 See CALAMIA, op. cit., p. 78 ff.; p. 88 ff. at 90. � On 10 September 1976 Branislav Petrovic, a Jugoslav journalist, was tried and sentenced to life in Lybia "pour avoir divulgue des secrets d'Etat". He was then released in September 1977 and expelled. (See En Ligne Directe, October 1977). On 22 January 1980 Sergei Simin, correspondent of the Soviet news agency Novosti in Wellington, was expelled from New Zealand, as a protest against Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. (See En Ligne

  • Directe, February 1980). But more often than not, States do not expel foreign journalists on merely political grounds. They prefer to allege grounds such as "advocacy of communism, espionage, subversive activities" and so on. See also in this connection, KELLY, Access Denied, the Politics of Press Censorship, Beverly Hills-London, 1978. 24 See LEARY, "The implementation of the Human Rights provisions of the Helsinki Final Act: a preliminary assessment", in BUERGENTHAL, op. cit., p. 1 II ff.

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