IFJ says 2016 was another deadly year for journalists around the world

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A Syrian media activist who was covering news about battles in Deir ez-Zor, running amid shelling. File photo

At least 93 journalists and media staff were killed in targeted attacks, by bombs or by crossfire, in 2016, the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) said on Saturday.

A further 29 journalists lost their lives in two plane crashes.

According to the IFJ’s annual report, the number was down from 112 in 2015.

Iraq still had the largest number of media killings with 15, ahead of Afghanistan with 13 and Mexico with 11, eight in Yemen, six in both Guatemala and in Syria, and five in both India and Pakistan.

“Any decrease in violence against journalist and media personnel is always welcome but these figures… leave little room for comfort and reinforce hopes for the end of the security crisis in the media sector,” IFJ president Philippe Leruth said in a statement.

“There cannot be impunity for these crimes,” Leruth stressed.

In the two plane crashes, 20 Brazilian journalists died in Colombia and nine Russian media staff died as they headed to Syria.

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