IFJ welcomes press freedom commitment, new Asean body

MANILA, Philippines – An international media watchdog group welcomed Tuesday the formation of the Legislative Caucus on Rights and Free Expression, a new regional body of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) to promote press freedom.

The International Federation of Journalists noted the formation of the Caucus was announced at the 14th Asean summit in Thailand last February 28.

“The IFJ encourages the Legislative Caucus on Rights and Free Expression to take an active role in opening stronger lines of dialogue between Southeast Asian governments and the international human rights and press freedom communities,” IFJ Asia-Pacific Director Jacqueline Park said.

“In 2008, nine journalists in the Philippines, four in Thailand and one in Cambodia were killed while conducting their professional work. In 2009, the Philippines has already seen the murder of a radio journalist and the attempted murder of another,” IFJ added.

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