TO MEDIA AND JOURNALISTS
Zagreb, 28 October 2016
Attack on the President of the Croatian Journalist Association is not an isolated case: since 2015 there have been more than 75 attacks on media in Croatia
Human Rights House Zagreb (HRHZ) strongly condemns the recent attack on journalist and president of the Croatian Journalists’ Association (HND), Saša Leković. This attack, a sabotage carried out on his personal automobile, particularly raises concern as it was clearly aimed at inflicting at least a serious physical injury to Mr. Leković. Taking into account the gravity of the situation, HRHZ demands prompt and urgent reaction by the Police and the State’s Attorney Office. Each attack on media, especially physical assaults on journalists must be immediately and thoroughly investigated and perpetrators brought to justice.
Unfortunately, this is not an isolated incident, but rather the continuation of an alarming trend of attacks on journalists and media. During its regular monitoring and reporting on cases related to violation of media freedoms, HRHZ has recorded a total of 75 cases of physical and verbal attacks, threats and external pressures in the period from the 1 January 2015 until the 1 September 2016. During his visit to Croatia last spring, the Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe, Mr. Nils Muižnieks stressed that attacks on journalists must be treated with particular severity, while institutions must send a clear and strong message about the inadmissibility of such conduct in a democratic society.
Sadly, as evidenced by the recent examples of threats to journalist Mr. Goran Borković and the editorial board of Forum.tm, HRHZ wants to warn that Croatian institutions, especially the Police and the State Attorney’s Office, so far did not approach this issue seriously enough. In accordance with Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights, Croatia is responsible for taking all active measures in order to create and secure a supportive environment for the freedom of expression. This necessarily implies the protection of journalists against attacks, as further emphasized in the Recommendations of the Council of Europe’s Committee of Ministers on the protection of journalism and safety of journalists and other media actors.
See the full press release for contact information.
- Press release: Attack on President of the Croatian Journalists Association Is Not an Isolated Case
Human Rights House Zagreb issued the following press release condemning the recent attack on journalist and president of the Croatian Journalists’ Association (HND), Saša Leković. This follows more than 75 attacks on media in Croatia since 2015.