121 journalists killed in 2012

Marie ColvinMore than 120 journalists and media workers have been killed so far in 2012, with the conflict in Syria making it one of the bloodiest in recent years.

The International Federation of Journalists said there has been a total of 121 deaths among media personnel from targeted killings, bomb attacks and cross-fire incidents in 2012.

This is up 13% on the 107 killed in 2011 and 22% on the 94 that died in 2010. In 2009 113 media personnel were killed.

The IFJ said that Syria was the most dangerous country in the world for media personnel this year, with 35 fatalities recorded. Sunday Times reporter Marie Colvin was killed in the conflict there in February.

It was followed by Somalia, which the IFJ called a “media killing field” with 18.

Organised crime in Mexico and insurgents in Pakistan led to 10 journalist deaths in each country, making them joint third.

The Philippines and Iraq each accounted for five deaths.

The IFJ said that the “constant finding” in its annual report was that journalists are being deliberately targeted “with the clear intention to silence them”.

“The death toll for 2012 is another indictment of governments which pay lip service to the protection of journalists, but have consistently failed to stop their slaughter,” said Jim Boumelha, president of the IFJ.

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