Ceremony at Washington’s Newseum honors journalists killed in 2017 in pursuit of news

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People look at a photo showing Veronique Robert, killed in Iraq in 2017, during a memorial event for journalists killed in 2017 at the Newseum in Washington, DC on June 4, 2018. (AFP / ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS)
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Jan Neuharth, chair and CEO of the Freedom Forum Institute, speaks as family members and friends of journalists killed in 2017 listen during a memorial event at the Newseum in Washington DC on June 4, 2018. (AFP / ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS)
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Gene Policinski, President of the Freedom Forum Institute, reacts during a memorial event for journalists killed in 2017 at the Newseum in Washington, DC on June 4, 2018. (AFP/ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS)
Updated 04 June 2018
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Ceremony at Washington’s Newseum honors journalists killed in 2017 in pursuit of news

WASHINGTON: An AFP contributor investigating drug cartels shot to death in Mexico. An American freelance journalist fatally shot while embedded with South Sudan rebels. A blogger in Malta killed in a car bomb after reporting on corruption and cronyism.
These were among 18 fallen members of the media whose names were inscribed Monday on the journalists memorial at the Newseum, a Washington museum dedicated to the understanding of the importance of a free press.
The latest group, including eight women and two freelancers, represents a fraction of the dozens of journalists killed last year on the job but aims to draw public attention to the dangers faced those pursuing the news around the world.
The 18 who died “represent the much larger threat to all journalists, who face unprecedented dangers as they strive to provide information about our society, often in countries where press freedom is imperiled or nonexistent,” said Jan Neuharth, chief executive of the Freedom Forum, the parent organization of the Newseum.
The memorial wall which was created two decades ago bears the name of more than 2,300 who died in newsgathering since 1835.
The latest group honored included Christopher Allen, a 26-year-old US freelancer shot in the head during a battle between the South Sudanese army and rebels. Government officials claimed he was not targeted.
Also included was Maltese investigative journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, killed by a car bomb last October as she lifted the lid on widespread corruption in the Mediterranean country.
Added to the wall were two Mexican journalists slain following their investigations of drug cartels: Javier Valdez, the founder of weekly newspaper Riodoce and a longtime AFP contributor, shot outside his offices; and Miroslava Breach, a veteran crime and politics reporter found dead inside her car with gunshot wounds to the head.
Holly Williams, a CBS News correspondent who spoke at the ceremony, said those honored showed remarkable bravery in the face of adversity.
Williams said a number of the journalists killed “went about their work knowing that in doing so they were making themselves targets, and I’m humbled by that because it must take a kind of courage that I find frankly unimaginable.”
Others listed on the memorial included Mohamed Abazied, Hawker Faisal Mohammed and Dilshan Ibash (killed in Syria); Shifa Gardi, Arkan Sharifi, Stephane Villeneuve and Veronique Robert (Iraq); Sudip Dutta Bhaumik and Gauri Lankesh (India); Nikolai Andrushchenko (Russia); Yameen Rasheed (Maldives); Maria Efigenia Vasquez Astudillo (Colombia); Kim Wall (Denmark); and Christopher Iban Lozada (Philippines).


WhatsApp to limit message forwarding

This photo illustration shows an Indian newspaper vendor reading a newspaper with a full back page advertisement from WhatsApp intended to counter fake information, in New Delhi on July 10, 2018. (AFP)
Updated 20 July 2018
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WhatsApp to limit message forwarding

  • Indians forward more messages, photos and videos than any other country in the world

NEW DELHI: WhatsApp announced curbs on its service in India on Friday in an effort to stop a spate of horrific lynchings and to assuage government threats of legal action in its biggest market.
More than 20 people have been killed by mobs in the past two months across the country after being accused of child kidnapping and other crimes in viral messages circulated on WhatsApp.
The Facebook-owned firm said on Friday that in India it will test limiting the ability of users to forward messages, and will also experiment with a lower limit of five chats at once.
It addition, it said it will “remove the quick forward button next to media messages,” a statement said.
“We believe that these changes — which we’ll continue to evaluate — will help keep WhatsApp the way it was designed to be: a private messaging app,” it added.
Under pressure from Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government, the firm had already announced new features to help users identify messages that have been forwarded.
WhatsApp had also bought full-page adverts in Indian newspapers with tips on how to spot misinformation.
But in a strongly worded statement released late Thursday, India’s information technology ministry said the action taken was not enough.
“Rampant circulation of irresponsible messages in large volumes on their platform have not been addressed adequately by WhatsApp,” the ministry said.
“When rumors and fake news get propagated by mischief-mongers, the medium used for such propagation cannot evade responsibility and accountability,” it said.
“If (WhatsApp) remain mute spectators they are liable to be treated as abettors and thereafter face consequent legal action.”