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Home arrow newsitems arrow Free Press NGO RSF (f. FIDH) v.Director Bernard to EF: Daphne Murder Enquiry Incident+Journalism Now

Free Press NGO RSF (f. FIDH) v.Director Bernard to EF: Daphne Murder Enquiry Incident+Journalism Now

Pisac ACM
10. 06. 2018.
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*Strasbourg/EU-Parliament/Angelo Marcopolo/- Replying to an "Eurofora"s Question, the New v. Director-General of the International Press Freedom Watchdog "Reporters withOut Borders" (RSF), Lecturer at the prestigious "Sciences Po" University in Paris, and Experienced former Long-Time CEO at the International Federation of Human Rights' Leagues (FIDH), Antoine Bernard, denounced the fact that "Legitimate Doubts" are Now Casted upon the Fate of a Controversial criminal Investigation, by the Maltese Authorities, on the Murder of Web-News Journalist Daphne Caruana-Galicia, according to Recent Developments, (See, among others, also : ..., + ..., + ..., etc).

 

Antoine Bernard denounced, in this regard, a Recent Incident, concerning a Key Judge involved in that Enquiry in Malta, which Dangerously touched upon a matter Denounced on 2018 by the CoE as the Main Risk of Corruption amidst Judges throughout its 47 Member States, (See Infra).


+ On this Key Occasion, he even Highlighted some very Interesting Building-Blocks for a New Definition of real Journalism, Nowadays, (more Near to ECHR, IACHR, and CoE's Experts and Committee of Ministers' Views), , as it is Inspired also by Daphne's real, recent and Dramatic Affair, (Comp., among others, f.ex. : ... + ..., etc).


---------------------------------------------


Bernard had been Invited to EU Parliament in Strasbourg in order to give a Lecture at an event on the occasion of which were Distributed lavish Books on EU's Annual Prize "Zacharov" for Freedom of Thought and Expression, awarded to Exceptional Personalities, around the World, who Dared Take Risks and/or Sacrifice their Freedom and/or Life in Struggling for People's Human Rights against various forms of severe Oppression.


----------------------------


 - In "Eurofora"s Question to Bernard,


after expressing the Hope that his extensive relevant Experience as former Long-Time CEO of the International Federation of Human Rights' Leagues (IFDH), just before becoming, Earlier this Year (2018), the New v. Director of Press Freedom Watchdog "Reporters without Borders" (RSF), would really Help to Boost much needed Effective Protection of all Journalists' Liberty and Safety,


we Reminded the Fact that, the Brutally Murdered Journalist Daphne, by a Bomb Explosion, just out of her Family Home, recently last Autumn, (to whom EU Parliament decided to Dedicate its Press Conference Room in Strasbourg, after a Proposal by its New President Antonio Tajani), had been notoriously Hindered (as her Sons Denounced to "Eurofora" also in Strasbourg : See ..., and a Reading of her Publications easily Proves), and systematically Censored, at her previous Media of the Establishment, where she used to hold a Weekly Column in the Past, (mainly by Threats to Refuse Government-sponsored and/or Other Public Sector's Paid  "Adds"), so that she was Obliged to set up Her Own WebNews "NoteBook" at the Internet, whese she was Alone to Publish Critical NewsReports on her own Name, thereby Dangerously Exposing her own Person and Family to all, various Risks, (Comp. f.ex., aussi : ..., etc).


+=> Therefore, we Asked Bernard, whether such Recent and Tragic Events, inspired him the Need, (particularly in Popular Modern Communication Technologies' Societies, in the Present Era of Internet, which had Started for Web-Journalists as Early as "Since the very Beginning of the World Wide Web, Already from the Middle of 1990ies^" : Comp., f.ex., "Drudge Report", "WND", and/or "Eurofora" co-Founder's "EIW" 1st cooperative European/International WebNews outlet experiment, Published from Strasbourg on Early 1996, in English, French and Spanish, etc), to eventually make Evolve and UpDate the very Definition of Real "Journalism",


>>> in order, at last, to clearly Drop a "Too Fiscal" Deformation, mainly "Depending on the ...Percentage of Money that someone might be Paid f.ex. by a Commercial Businessman who Bought a Newspaper, a TV Chanel, or a Local Radio, etc, for his own selfish Interests", (as unfortunately is still the case in a Few Countries, Contrary to Others, who have come Closer to much more Serious, Legitimate and Democratic Approaches of Journalism Nowadays), so that it may soon Come Near to the European Court of Human Rights' relevant case-law (Based on Article 10), as well as to the Inter-American Human Rights Court's two Historic, Landmark plenary Decisions dating so Early as, Already Since ...1985, and even to CoE's Democracy, Human Rights and Rule of Law PanEuropean Organisation's Top Experts and Committee of Ministers', much Better Definitions,


which, basically, Focus on whether the concerned Persons have really Dedicated themselves into Regularly Searching, Analysing and Publishing Original News on Serious Issues of General Interest to the Society, (according to elementary Press Deontology Principles : Comp., inter alia, also, f.ex. : ..., ..., etc).


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 - "Journalist-Blogger Daphne Caruana-Galicia, (was) Murdered on October 16, 2017, in Malte", Bernand reminded, citting her Name in Full, in his Reply to "Eurofora"s Question.


- Her "The Mobilisation of her 3 Children, Andrew, Mathieu and Paul, who are naturally accompagnied (also) by RSF, is mainly seeking Justice".

- "We are Following with Extreme Attention, at the RSF, and Together with EU Parliament, the Developments in the Investigation, in view of eventual Prosecution, in Malta".


- As "it's the Duty of Maltese Authorities, We are Expecting that an Independent Investigation Results into Identifying the Suspects, those who Committed that Murder, including the Instigators, Whoever they might be, results, in a Judicial Procedure which is naturally fair, but Imposes Sanctions to the Authors of that Murder, and provides Just satisfaction to its Victims".


- "RSF followed, with Attention the Latest, Recent EU Parliament's Mission, which has just taken place only a Few Days Ago, and expressed a certain Number of "Concerns, regarding the Obstacles on the Way that this Investigation is going".


 + "RSF has, in particular, Underlined, just 3 Days ago, that we feel Extremely Concerned, as the Judge in charge of this Enquiry, and who had Declared his Determination to Advance all the way through, up to the End, - and who was, even more, the Only One to do so, since All Other Mechanisms of Enquiry, had been Interrupted, Freezed, and/or Suspended -this Judge who had won the Trust of all those who Expected for Justice to be done, (Suddenly), was Awarded the Benefit of a (Career) Promotion, withOut having Asked for it, and even withOut being able to Refuse it (sic !)".

 

By a Coincidence, that Strange Move surfaced Shortly after CoE's Anti-Corruption Watchdog, "GRECO"'s Latest Annual Report, Published Recently in Strasbourg, Denounced the Fact that such "Career" issues were, nowadays, the Number 1, Greatest Risk for Corruption of Judges  throughout its 47 Member States, (See: http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/daphnepressfreedomandcorruption.html).


=> Nowadays, "in Consequence, there is a Legitimate Doubt, casted upon the Maltese Authorities, concerning the Fate Reserved for the Investigation on the Murder of Daphne Caruana - Galicia".


 - But, at any case,  - "We (RSF) will Never, Never Give up, Until the full Elucidation on all those Responsible for her Murder !", the International Press Freedom Watchdog's new v.Director Stongly Vowed, in Conclusion of his Reply to "Eurofora"s relevant Question.


-------------------------------------


 + Moreover, as far as "Eurofora" Question's 2nd aspect was concerned, on Nowadays' Definition of real Journalism, (Comp. Supra), Bernard afterwards Returned Back to Stress, in substance, that it should Better be near to the World Famous, French Writer/Philosopher "Albert Camus" well known Motto that as he had Characteristically written : - <<Journalism is to point the Pencil at where it Hurts !>>


 - "That's the Definition of real Journalism, that You were Asking for !", RSF's New v.Director Added, in his Responses to "Eurofora", Later-on, while also Reminding the relevant ECHR's "case-law, Since 1976 Already, about the Human Right to Publish even Critical News, which are not always "Favourably received or regarded as Inoffensive or as a matter of Indifference", But, on the Contrary, might "Offend, Shock or Disturb", while deserving to be protected for Pluralist Public Debate "in a Democratic Society", (Comp., among Many Others, also, f.ex. "Handyside v. the UK", etc).

+ Naturally, this has to go, "Together with" the Historic "Declaration of Munich", on Press Deontology, "of course, with an Adequate Up-Date", the Experienced, former Long Time CEO of FIDH and currently new v.Director of "Reporters without Borders", went on to Spontaneously tell "Eurofora" later on, (Comp. inter alia, also "Eurofora"s relevant Links, f.ex. at : http://www.eurofora.net/deontology.html, etc)

++ In this regard, Bernard also showed Interest for Aidan White's (the Experienced former Long-Time Secretary General of the European/International Federation of Journalists, HQ in Brussels, CoE's Top Expert, and now Head of the "Ethical Journalism Network"), Past and Current, relevant Work, particularly on guaranteing elementary Traditional Journalism's Legal Protection to WebNews Authors committed to respect Press Deontology. And he promised to have a look for Comment to a relevant, key "Eurofora"s Publication's Ideas, precisely on a landmark relevant Article Published by Aidan White in CoE's 2015 Book about "Journalism at Risk", together with an Original Interview of his Successor, the New Secretary General of the European Federation of Journalists, Ricardo Gutierrez, as well as an Original Analysis of Inter-American Human Rights Court's (IACHR) Historic 2 "Unanimous" Decisions on the Legal Definition of Journalism, taken as Early as, Already since 1985.

 

By an incredible Coincidence, they had been clearly Evoked by a CoE's Top Expert during an important International Conference on "Ending Impunity for Crimes against Journalism", just the Week Before an Armed Gang of Monstruous ISIL's Islamist Terrorists Cowadly Targetting innocent Civilian People with Machine Guns and/or Bombs, Killed more than a Hundred of Defenseless Victims at the "Bataclan" a.o. Attacks on the 13th of November 2015 : I.e. precisely on the Day of the 30th Anniversary of the above-mentioned, Historic IACHR's Unanimous Decisions ! (See : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/iachrcoebookandefjsgonjournalismdefinition.html, etc). It's also an UnForgetable Fact that, already from the outset, the 1st ever Target of ISIL's Coward Killers aiming at defenseless Civilian People in France, was, precisely, a kind or Critical Journalism, practiced by atypical "Charlie Hebdo" Weekly Authors, back on January 7, that Same Year (2015)...                

 

(../..)


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ECHR's President to "EuroFora" on Journalists Gongadze and Adali murders : Principles must apply to all States, without discrimination.


+ ECHR's Statistics on Freedom of Expression (See below).


 European Court of Human Rights' President, Jean-Paul Costa, questioned by "EuroFora" on Journalists' murders, as in Gongadze and Adali's cases etc., strongly stressed all CoE Member States' obligation to make efficient Investigations to find and punish those responsible, and underlined that ECHR's case-law's principles must apply to all without any discrimination.

His call was clearly supported by various Top MEPs who denounced a risk of "Double Standards" if some Journalists' murders are investigated, while others don't.

To avoid such risks, CoE's Parliamentary Assembly adopted a Resolution, on the occasion of Ukranian Journalist Gongadze's murder, "stressing", as a matter of general Principle, "the importance it attaches to the safety of Journalists and political activists, especially those linked to opposition groups, in ALL member states of the CoE". All "crimes against journalists and political activists must be investigated ... as a matter of priority, without political interference".

Costa was replying to "EuroFora"s question on the fact that, after CoE's Committee of Ministers, also CoE's Assembly had just adopted a Resolution on Gongadze murder case, based on an ECHR's judgement of 2005, asking a full Investigation from Ukraine, who has found and condemned  in 10 years of jail 2 executants, but not yet the instigators.

While nothing similar was yet done for dissident Turkish Cypriot Kutlu Adali's murder, with 5 bullets shot at his head out of his Family's home in the territories of Cyprus occupied by Ankara's army, despite another ECHR's judgement of the same year 2005, and despite Turkey's claim that nobody was found among those responsible for the murder, and that there was nothing more to do..

In order to be credible and efficient, CoE's mechanisms shouldn't find a way to at least ask for full investigations of all Journalists' murders anywhere they might be committed, without exceptions ?

adali_gongadze


- "On the larger question that you raised, I'd like to say, since we are in a period of stock-taking on ECHR's 50 Years, that the Court's case-law developed certain concepts ....such as the Positive obligations of States, part of which are also the procedural obligations", started to reply ECHR's President.

 - "Whenever Journalists, Lawyers, Defenders of Human Rights, or even simple Citizens are murdered, the States are held responsible, not only if its their own security forces' agents who committed these murders, but also if they didn't make sufficiently substantial and efficient Investigations", he stressed.

- "I want to strongly underline that we (ECHR) have found in many cases numerous violations of Articles 2 and 3 against States, ....(about) murders or torture, ...because they didn't make enough Investigations in order to try to find and punish those responsible".

- "We (ECHR) do that vis-a-vis all 47 (CoE) Member States, without any discrimination".

"Naturally, the circumstances in each particular case may be differend, and we can't ommit to apply the rules of proof, or the rules of criminal procedure".

"But we try, by all means, to apply these principles of our case-law, to all States", he concluded.

imag0335_400


      Costa's call was strongly supported by several Top CoE MEPs, from various Political areas


- "To investigate the murder of one Journalist, and not of another, looks like Double Standards", denounced the President of EuroLeft Group in CoE's Assembly, Dutch MEP Tiny Cox.  

- "What is the reason ? Politics or specificity of a case ? Of course, if Cyprus and Turkey are involved, it's always a Political case"..

- "Murders of Journalists should always be fully investigated, because killing Journalists is not only killing persons, but also killing Free Press".  "We (CoE's Assembly) should do our outmost to help People who are working on Free Press and they are under threat or murdered".

Because for Free Politics, Free Press is a pre-requisitive : Parliamentarians  cannot  function without a Free Press. Not investigating, is not protecting ourselves".

So we should investigate all Journalists' murders : We are talking about Gongadze, about the Cypriot man (Adali), about the Journalist murdered in Moscow one week ago, etc", Cox concluded

- "CoE can' look at these cases differently. CoE can't wear Blinckers  !".
- "If the one is investigated, so has to be also the other. Why there wasn't full investigation ? Why's that ?", wondered British  Socialist MEP, Alan Meale.

- "A good idea" would be to "make a Motion for Resolution", and "join all Journalists' murders. Adali and Gongadze etc", said to "EuroFora" EU Parliament Political affairs Committee's President, Goran Lindbland, ChristianDemocrat MEP from Sweden.


(See also earlier News at "EuroFora" on similar issues).
-------------------------------

ECHR's Statistics on Freedom of Expression :


    Almost Half of condemnations by ECHR for violations of Freedom of Expression in 2008, concern Turkey : 20 out of a total of 48 for all CoE's Member States.

    Russia, Poland, France and Moldova were condemned only 3 times. Romania, Greece, Portugal, 2 times, and the other CoE Member States only 1 time, or none.
--------------------
    During the last Decade : 1998 - 2008, Turkey was condemned for violating Freedom of Expression in ..169 cases, while Austria only in 24.

    France and Moldova in 14 and 13, respectively, closely followed by Russia and Poland with 11 and 10, respectively. The rest of CoE Member States had less than ten condemnations.    
    

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