International Day to End Impunity for Crimes Against Journalists 2019: Know History and Significance of This UN-Recognised Day
International Day to End Impunity for Crimes Against Journalists 2019 (Photo Credits: unesco.org)

Every year, November 2 is observed as the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists. This year, the United Nations-recognised day falls on Saturday. The main motive of this day is to draw attention to the low conviction rate for violent crimes against journalists and media personnel, estimated just 10 percent conviction rate. As journalists play a crucial role in informing and influencing the people about important issues, impunity for attacks against them has a damaging impact on society.

According to the UN data, in the past 12 years, more than 1,000 journalists have been killed for reporting news and bringing information in public. In nine of the ten cases, the accused goes unpunished. The impunity leads to more deaths. The impunity also damages the society by covering up the serious human rights abuses, crime and corruption. India Ranks 14th Among Nations With Worst Record of Punishing Journalist Killers in CPJ’s Global Impunity Index.

"When journalists are targeted, societies as a whole pay a price. Without the ability to protect journalists, our ability to remain informed and contribute to decision-making is severely hampered. Without journalists able to do their jobs in safety, we face the prospect of a world of confusion and disinformation," said UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

On November 2, individuals and organisation across the world are encouraged to talk about unsolved cases against journalists and media workers in their counties and write to the government official to demand action and justice. UNESCO also organises an awareness-raising campaign.

The UN General Assembly adopted Resolution 68/163 at its 68th session in 2013 which declared November 2 as the ‘International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists’ (IDEI). "The Resolution urged the Member States to implement definite measures countering the present culture of impunity. The date was chosen in commemoration of the assassination of two French journalists in Mali on 2 November 2013," UN stated in its website.