1,668 journalists killed in past 20 years (2003-2022).

At the end of a year in which the number of journalists killed in connection with their work rose again, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) has compiled and analysed the figures for journalists killed during the past 20 years, two deadly decades for those in the service of the right to inform.

What with murders, contract killings, ambushes, war zone deaths and fatal injuries, a staggering total of 1,668 journalists have been killed worldwide in connection with their work in the last two decades (2003-2022), according to RSF’s tallies based above all on its annual round-ups. This gives an average of more than 80 journalists killed every year. The total killed since 2000 is 1,787. 

Darkest years

The annual death tolls peaked in 2012 and 2013 with 144 and 142 journalists killed, respectively. These peaks, due in large measure to the war in Syria, were followed by a gradual fall and then historically low figures from 2019 onwards.

Sadly, the number of journalists killed in connection with their work in 2022 – 58 according to RSF’s Press Freedom Barometer on 28 December – was the highest in the past four years and was 13.7% higher than in 2021, when 51 journalists were killed.

15 most dangerous countries

During the past two decades, 80% of the media fatalities have occurred in 15 countries. The two countries with the highest death tolls are Iraq and Syria, with a combined total of 578 journalists killed in the past 20 years, or more than a third of the worldwide total. They are followed by Afghanistan, Yemen and Palestine. Africa has not been spared, with Somalia coming next.

Source: https://rsf.org


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