Statement by the Secretary General Thomas E. Garrett on

World Press Freedom Day

May 3, 2024

In 2024, World Press Freedom Day highlights the vital role of independent journalism in addressing the global environmental crisis.

Freedom of the press and freedom of opinion and expression are critical for reporting on this and other urgent issues of public concern.  But in today’s reality of a rapidly growing disinformation industry and rising political polarization, fact-based reporting is often undermined and under attack.

The safety of journalists remains a serious concern despite actions taken by the international community. Aside from traditional forms of violence, journalists are increasingly victims of digital violence, including online threats and the abuse of new technologies such as surveillance and spyware.

As we commemorate the 2024 World Press Freedom Day, I urge democratic governments to acknowledge and actively combat the growing threats towards journalists. It is our collective responsibility to safeguard media freedoms for the benefit of all citizens.