BAJ joined the Perugia Declaration in support of Ukraine

10.04.2022 Source: BAJ Press Service

Perugia Declaration for Ukraine – 9 April 2022

The International Journalism Festival and members and partners of the Global Forum for Media Development call for increased support of independent media and journalists in Ukraine.


Sign the declaration here.

April 9, 2022

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has underlined once again the essential role of independent, ethical journalism in assisting citizens to make life-or-death decisions, informing the world, and holding the powerful to account.

As a powerful antidote to the disinformation and propaganda that characterise hybrid warfare, and as a pillar of democracy upon which other freedoms and rights depend, journalism in Ukraine is undergoing a terrible assault.

The targeting, torturing, and killing of journalists is abhorrent and must be stopped. Those responsible must be held accountable and brought to justice under national and international law. Vicious online attacks against news organisations and individual journalists must also cease. We condemn Russia’s attacks on press freedom and freedom of expression in Ukraine in the strongest possible terms.

The safety and security of all journalists to report freely are essential to ensure that the world understands the reality and facts of the ongoing war, including the humanitarian consequences.

We stand in solidarity with all journalists and independent media covering Russia’s aggression against Ukraine.

The greater the threat to Ukrainian journalists’ lives, livelihoods, and ability to do their jobs, the greater will be our efforts to support them. Funding, protective gear, equipment, housing, training, office space in foreign cities, and psychosocial support – we will do everything we can to support our Ukrainian colleagues’ ability to continue reporting and serving the urgent needs of their audiences.

A window of opportunity for journalism and journalists everywhere

In countries with access to independent sources of news, an often sceptical public are recognising the bravery, commitment and professionalism of journalists and media outlets, both Ukrainian and international. Even governments with hostile dispositions to free, independent media are being forced to acknowledge the vital role journalism plays in ensuring that the world sees the invasion of Ukraine for what it is. Tech companies too are waking up to the fact that not all information is equal, and that there is a moral imperative to give due prominence to professional, independent, public interest journalism.

This nascent, new-found and rekindled recognition of journalism’s value among the public and policy makers is fragile. Ukrainian reporters and international journalists reporting from Ukraine have earned a window of opportunity. The greatest leaps of progress are often made in times of crisis. We, collectively, cannot afford to squander it.

For the sake of the immediate future and safety of our Ukrainian colleagues, and the long term viability of independent, public interest journalism everywhere, this is a moment that we all need to rise to.

For the benefit of media and journalists everywhere, we:

  • Insist that states and armed groups must release all imprisoned and kidnapped journalists, including those detained or sentenced under the guise of prohibiting defamation or countering terrorism;
  • Acknowledge that many conflicts and crises have at times not received the united, rapid and sustained response that our collective conscience demands;
  • Affirm that field producers are journalists not “fixers” – their language skills, cultural and regional understanding and strong networks of contacts are crucial to international reporting and deserve the same rights, respect, support, social security and credit as all journalists covering conflicts.
  • Commit to intensifying our efforts to support journalists in conflict zones, in exile, and facing hardship everywhere, including independent media/journalists from Belarus and Russia who have been forced to flee their countries;
  • Russia’s crackdown on dissent; its attacks against press freedom; its intimidation of independent journalism – these actions are forcing journalists who remain committed to truth-telling and free speech into silence or exile. Russian people are being denied access to the truth.

To international media and journalists, we ask that you:

  • Where legally permitted, provide surplus personal protective equipment to organisations able to transport this to Ukraine;
  • Draw attention to the social insecurity of Ukrainian field producers and translators’ who help foreign media by providing them with proper pay, insurance and additional safety guarantees;
  • Wherever possible make safety training available to Ukrainian journalists and to all journalists, including freelancers reporting from Ukraine, and “show the same concern for the welfare and safety of freelancers, local journalists and media workers as they do for their staff” including providing the same protective equipment to Ukrainian colleagues as to international reporters;
  • Open your doors to displaced journalists and newsrooms. Give them somewhere to work from. Hire them if you can afford to;
  • Listen to the calls of Ukrainian colleagues to use appropriate and accurate language when reporting on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, consistent with the ethical standards of independent journalism;

To private and public donors and funders of professional journalism, we ask that you

  • Urgently increase and provide flexible financial support to media that produce independent, ethical journalism, enabling them to hire or keep paying reporters, editors, and producers who are reporting on the Russian invasion of Ukraine;
  • When you fund journalism, remember, journalism is a public good. It is an end in itself, a pillar of democracy upon which many other freedoms and rights depend. Do not undermine its independence by seeking to instrumentalise it as a tool of strategic communication or as a means to achieve other development objectives. Treat it with the respect it deserves and follow the well-established best practices and guidance on effective support to journalism;
  • Simplify the process of applying for funding in emergencies: Application forms must be in local languages and should not require large amounts of internet data by requiring numerous files to be uploaded;
  • Ensure that media and journalism are included in all aid coordination mechanisms;
  • Provide support not just for newsrooms, but individual journalists and freelancers from Ukraine, as well as via mechanisms of fellowships or content production projects;
  • Consider providing not only financial support, but also methodological and technical support. This can be the transfer of equipment for affected editors, training or publication of methodological materials.

To the EU, EU member states, members of the Media Freedom Coalition and all states that care about the right to freedom of expression and access to information to

  • Provide emergency visas and safe havens for Ukrainian journalists, as well as an independent journalists from Belarus and Russia, to re-establish their bases of operations and continue reporting;
  • Condemn and push back against the trend of criminalising journalism, a hallmark of creeping authoritarianism in many parts of the world. Journalism is not a crime;
  • Use all multilateral fora to defend the rights of journalists and advance their protection as civilians under international humanitarian law, particularly in the context of Russia’s war on Ukraine;
  • Contribute to all efforts to investigate and bring to justice cases of journalists targeted in this war.

To technology, telecoms, internet intermediaries and advertisers, we ask you to

  • Work with the media and journalism community to identify, protect and uplift independent, ethical journalism, fact-checking, and media literacy efforts;
  • Prevent automated takedowns of journalistic content documenting evidence of international crimes of aggression, war crimes, crimes against humanity, and other serious human rights violations. These need to be available for journalists, fact-checkers, investigators and other stakeholders to effectively bring perpetrators to account and end impunity. Strengthen transparency and notice procedures, expedite appeal and remedy;
  • Reverse commercial incentives – both through algorithms and content moderation policies – that discriminate against public-interest journalism’s ability to reach audiences and monetise high-quality content;
  • Work with advertisers to stop the use of blacklist technology to block ads from appearing next to journalism and news media stories that mention conflicts like Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, the COVID-19 pandemic and other critical health and social issues;
  • Deliver internet accessibility to all: prioritise maintaining internet accessibility and connectivity, and promote the right to access information.

We continue to stand in solidarity with all journalists around the world who work in areas of conflict or where freedom of expression is limited, to deliver trusted information in the public interest.

Signatories (organisations):

  1. ACOS Alliance
  2. Afghanistan Journalists Center (AFJC)
  3. Ahval News
  4. Albanian Media Institute (AMI)
  5. ARTICLE 19
  6. Associação Brasileira de Jornalismo Investigativo (Abraji)
  7. Association of Caribbean Media Workers
  8. Association des journalistes européens – France
  9. Association of Independent Press (API)
  10. BaleBengong (Indonesia)
  11. Baltic Internet Policy Initiative
  12. Bangladesh NGOs Network for Radio and Communication
  13. BBC Media Action
  14. Belarusian Association of Journalists
  15. Border Center for Journalists and Bloggers
  16. Canadian Journalism Forum on Violence and Trauma
  17. Canadian Journalism Foundation (CJF)
  18. CFI Medias
  19. Centre for Investigative Journalism (CIJ)
  20. Centre for Law and Democracy (CLD)
  21. Circular Initiatives Roadmap (CIR)
  22. Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ)
  23. Community Media Forum Europe (CMFE)
  24. Community Media Solutions (CMS)
  26. CREOpoint
  27. The Daphne Caruana Galizia Foundation
  28. Daraj Media
  29. Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma
  30. Detector Media, Ukraine
  31. Digital Content Next
  32. DW Akademie
  33. elDiario.es
  35. Ethical Journalism Network (EJN)
  36. European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF)
  37. European Federation of Journalists (EFJ)
  38. European Journalism Centre (EJC)
  39. Fathm
  40. Finnish Foundation for Media and Development (Vikes)
  41. Free Press Unlimited (FPU)
  42. Fojo Media Institute
  43. Fundación Gabo
  44. Fondation Hirondelle
  45. Foundation “Souspilnist”, Ukraine
  46. Giangiacomo Ceresara, Communication Specialist, Arriva (Deutsche Bahn)
  47. Global Forum for Media Development (GFMD)
  48. Global Investigative Journalism Network (GIJN)
  49. Global Youth & News Media
  50. The GroundTruth Project
  51. IFEX
  52. Independent Journalism Center, Moldova
  53. Independent Media Trade Union of Ukraine
  54. Institut Panos Grands Lacs
  55. Institute for Regional Media and Information (IRMI, Ukraine)
  56. Institute of Communication Studies
  57. Institute of Mass Information, Ukraine
  58. International Academy Serbia
  59. International Center for Journalists
  60. International Consortium of Investigative Journalists
  61. International Institute – International Media Center
  62. International Media Support (IMS)
  63. International Press Institute (IPI)
  64. Internews
  65. Internews Ukraine
  66. International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN)
  67. Jnomics Media
  68. Lviv Media Forum
  69. Maharat Foundation
  70. Magdalene
  71. Marko Marković, Director of Communications, NaftogazTeplo
  72. Media Association for Peace (MAP)
  73. Media Development Investment Fund
  74. Media Diversity Institute (MDI)
  75. Media Impact Funders
  76. Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA)
  77. Mediastandard.ro
  78. Namibia Media Trust (NMT)
  79. National Union of Journalists of Ukraine (NUJU)
  81. New Narratives
  82. Northern Studio
  83. One World Media
  84. Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP)
  85. Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)
  86. Panos Institute Southern Africa (PSAf)
  87. Paper Trail Media
  88. Public Interest Journalism Lab
  89. Public Interest News Foundation
  90. Public Media Alliance (PMA)
  91. Pulitzer Center
  92. Radio Ambulante Studios
  93. Radio Bullets
  94. Report for America
  95. Report for the World
  96. Reporters Without Borders (RSF)
  97. RIA Media Corporation (Ukraine)
  98. Samir Kassir Foundation – SKeyes Center for Media and Cultural Freedom
  99. Searchlight Development Action – Cameroon
  100. Social Weaver
  101. South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO)
  102. SyriaUntold
  103. TerminiTV
  104. THE CITY
  105. The Fix Media
  106. The Frontline Club (The Frontline Club Charitable Trust)
  107. The Ukrainians Media
  108. The VII Foundation
  109. The University of Georgia
  110. Thomson Foundation
  111. Transitions
  112. Voxeurop
  113. Will Media
  114. Women4europe
  115. World Association of News Publishers (WAN-IFRA)
  116. World Editors Forum
  117. The University of Georgia
  118. Union of Journalists in Finland
  119. Zamaneh Media

Add your organisation as a signature to the declaration using this very short sign up form.

Signatories (individuals: speakers, attendees and friends of the International Journalism Festival):

  1. Abiodun Salawu, Professor and Research Director, Indigenous Language Media in Africa, North-West University, South Africa
  2. Ahmad Quraishi, Executive Director, Afghanistan Journalists Center (AFJC)
  3. Alessandro Tommasi, Co-founder and CEO, Will Media
  4. Andrii Beliakov, Website Owner, Journalist, Bucha.city
  5. Angelina Fusco, Chair Dart Centre Europe
  6. Anna Masera, Vice Director, Giornale di Brescia
  7. Antonina Cherevko, Head of the Independent Media Council, Ukraine
  8. Anya Schiffrin, Senior Lecturer, Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs
  9. Artem Liss, Flying Fox Media Ltd.
  10. Assia Chaneva, Editor, Bulgarian National Radio
  11. Astrid Maier, Chief Editor, XING
  12. Baybars Orsek, Director, International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN)
  13. Benedetta Tobagi, Writer and Researcher
  14. Bill Orme, CEO, Emro Associates
  15. Bruce Shapiro, Executive Director, Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma and Adjunct Professor of Journalism, Columbia Journalism School
  16. Carlos Eduardo Huertas, Director, CONNECTAS
  17. Caroline Nursey OBE, Chief Executive Officer, BBC Media Action
  18. Charlie Beckett, Director, Polis, LSE
  19. Charlotte Lindberg, Editor/host, Yle (Finnish broadcasting company)
  20. Cherilyn Ireton, Executive Director, World Editors Forum, WAN-IFRA
  21. Courtney Radsch, Tech and media policy expert
  22. Daniela Pinheiro, Columnist, UOL
  23. Darrin Zammit Lupi, Contractor Photographer, Reuters
  24. Dmytro Tuzov, host “Radio NV”
  25. Elisabeth Fondren, Assistant Professor of Journalism, St. John’s University New York
  26. Erick Torrico, Coordinator of Democratic Communication Project, UNIR Bolivia Foundation
  27. Fergus Bell, CEO, Fathm
  28. Floriana Bulfon, Freelance Journalist
  29. Francesca Milano,Chora Media
  30. Francesco Filippi, Historian, Fondazione Museo Storico del Trentino
  31. Francesco Zaffarano, Editor-in-chief, Will Media
  32. François Nel, Reader in Media Innovation, University of Central Lancashire
  33. Gabriela Preda, Freelance Journalist
  34. Gian-Paolo Accardo, Editor-in-chief, Voxeurop
  35. Gilles Demptos, Director for Asia-Pacific, Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA-Asia)
  36. Giulia Blasi, Freelance writer
  37. Grazia Li Greci, Content Specialist, K-agency
  38. Gypsy Guillén Kaiser, Advocacy and Communications Director, Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ)
  39. Ilie Pintea, War Correspondent, Radio România Actualități
  40. India Bouquerel, Editor-in-chief, Live Magazine
  41. Iryna Savchenko, Program manager regional, Internews
  42. Isabelle Roughol, Founder, Borderline
  43. Jakub Parusinski, Editor, The Fix Media
  44. Jeremy Druker, Executive Director and Editor in Chief, Transitions
  45. John Crowley, Freelance journalist, Independent
  46. Jorge Luis Sierra, President, Border Center for Journalists and Bloggers
  47. Joris van Duijne, Executive Director, Zamaneh Media
  48. José Luis Benítez, Independent, Independent media and journalism researcher
  49. Juleyka Lantigua, Founder/CEO, LWC Studios
  50. Dr Julie Posetti, Global Director of Research, ICFJ
  51. Juliet Lodge, Women4europe
  52. Lars Tallert, Head of Policy, Fojo Media Institute
  53. Leli Bibilashvili, Associate Dean, The University of Georgia
  54. Kathy English, Chair of Board, Canadian Journalism Foundation
  55. Kristian Porter, CEO, Public Media Alliance (PMA)
  56. Luc Steinberg, Head of operations, Media Diversity Institute (MDI)
  57. Marina Constantinoiu, Project Coordinator, EditiaDeDeminieata.ro
  58. Marina Walker Guevara, Pulitzer Center
  59. Mary Myers, independent researcher and media consultant
  60. Mae Azango, New Narratives and Front Page Africa
  61. Marcelo Rech, Journalist, President, Brazilian Newspaper Association (ANJI)
  62. Maria Toghina, Journalist, Radio Romania
  63. Marius Dragomir, Director, Center for Media, Data & Society (CMDS)
  64. Mattia Cursi, Cameraman, Vudio
  65. Melanie Bunce, Head of the Journalism Department, City University of London
  66. Melanie Walker, Executive Director, Media Development, WAN-IFRA
  67. Michele Palmieri, Freelance Journalist
  68. Milica Pesic, Director, Media Diversity Institute (MDI)
  69. Mira Milosevic, Executive Director, Global Forum for Media Development (GFMD)
  70. Natalia Antelava, Editor in Chief, Coda Media
  71. Nataliya Gumenyuk, CEO, Public Interest Journalism Lab
  72. Nataliya Marchuk, Assistant Professor, Vasyl Stefanyk Precarpathian National University, Journalism Department
  73. Natia Kaladze, Dean, The University of Georgia
  74. Olaf Steenfadt, Director, Journalism Trust Initiative, Reporters Without Borders (RSF)
  75. Olga Myrovych, Head, Lviv Media Forum
  76. Owais Aslam Ali (Pakistan Press Foundation)
  77. Paul Nemitz, Principal Advisor, EU Commission
  78. Prue Clarke, Director, New Narratives
  79. Rasha Abdulla, Professor of Journalism and Mass Communication, The American University in Cairo
  80. Rebecca Harms,Vice Chair, ECPMF
  81. Remzi Lani, Director, Albanian Media Institute
  82. Rob Walker, Emeritus Professor, University of East Anglia
  83. Roger Casale, Secretary General, New Europeans International
  84. Sergio Caringi, Director, Meeting with the International Press in Brazil
  85. Silvia Boccardi, Journalist, Will Media
  86. Sophie Brown, Media consultant, Independent
  87. Steve Buckley, Community Media Solutions (CMS)
  88. Taras Prokopyshyn, CEO and Co-Founder, The Ukrainians Media
  89. Tom Law, Head of Policy and Learning, GFMD
  90. Tom Trewinnard, COO, Fathm
  91. Vasyl Stefanyk, Precarpathian National University, Journalism Department
  92. Victoria Bridges, Director, One World Media
  93. Victoria Oscarsson, Journalist, Yle (Finnish broadcasting company)
  94. Vincent Peyrègne, Chief Executive Officer, WAN-IFRA
  95. Virginia Stagni, Head of Business Development, Financial Times
  96. Vusumuzi Sifile, Executive Director, Panos Institute Southern Africa
  97. Wayne Robins, Adjunct Professor, St. John’s University
  98. Yavuz Baydar, Editor-in-Chief, Ahval News
  99. Yazan Badran, Visiting professor, postdoctoral researcher, Vrije Universiteit Brussel
  100. Zaneta Trajkoska, Director, Institute of Communication Studies
  101. Zakhar Protsiuk, The Fix Media
  102. Zoe Titus, Director, Namibia Media Trust

Add your name to the declaration using this very short sign up form.

The declaration is available in English, Ukrainian, RussianItalian, and French.