The Romanian Trade Union of Journalists (SRJ) MediaSind, founder member of the FAIR-MediaSind Culture and Mass-Media Federation - an affiliate to the International Federation of Journalists and to the European Federation of Journalists - condemns the actions of law enforcement who on August 10, 2018 physically and verbally attacked journalists who were in the line of duty.
In a release to AGERPRES, SRJ MediaSind cautions that the journalists' task is to keep the public informed and state institutions are required - as per the provisions of the Constitution of Romania and of the international conventions Romania is a party to - to protect mass-media workers when they perform their job in risky situations. Only by respecting this requirement is the industry's freedom of speech guaranteed.
"For this reason, SRJ MediaSind considers that the actions of the gendarmes who brutally attacked journalists on mission must be urgently punished. Therefore, SRJ MediaSind calls on the competent institutions to proceed to the speedy investigation of both the gendarmes who acted illegally and of those who gave the respective orders," the cited source said.
According to SRJ MediaSind, in the Medellin Declaration on Securing the Safety of Journalists and Combating Impunity, UNESCO calls on member states "to promote awareness and train their armed forces and police forces to respect and promote the safety of journalists in situations of risk, and to ensure that journalists are able to work in full security and independence in their territory."
"Under these circumstances, the Gendarmerie's public attitude is inexplicable. Their spokesman considered the gendarmes' brutal actions against journalists are justified, arguing that these professionals must submit to the same rules as all the participants in the protest rally," SRJ MediaSind underscores.