World Humanitarian Day: Brave and inspiring journalists reporting on conflict and injustice
Every day journalists risk their lives reporting on issues surrounding conflict and raising awareness of injustices all around the world. For World Humanitarian Day we have created a list of inspiring individuals that are attempting to bring to light wrongdoings and oppression.
Danish Siqququi sadly died on the 16th of July 2021 covering the Afghan-Taliban clashes near the Pakistan border and was ambushed by Taliban militants according to reports. He was a talented Indian photojournalist based in Delhi, who led the National Reuters Multimedia team and received the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Feature Photography for documenting the violence faced by Myanmar’s minority Rohingya community. In his career he courageously broadcasted conflict and social injustices worldwide and covered dangerous war zones and crises in Iraq, Hong Kong, and Nepal.
Reuters President Michael Friedenberg and Editor-in-Chief Alessandra Galloni said in a statement:
“Danish was an outstanding journalist, a devoted husband and father, and a much-loved colleague. Our thoughts are with his family at this terrible time.”
Danish Siddiqui will continue to inspire journalists worldwide for his courageous journalistic work. His tragic death highlights the dangers and the stark reality of journalism, and the great risks journalists take every day.
Katsiaryna Andreyeva (Bakhvalava) – Award–winning reporter for Belsat TV and co-author of Belarusian Donbas
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Katsiaryna Andreyeva (Bakhvalava) is known for her courageous work as a reporter for Belsat TV in Minsk. As a correspondent she visited Ukraine and Spain and covered several high-profile investigations which led to the publication of Belarusian Donbas written alongside Ihar Ilyash in 2017. This documentary book uncovered the role of the Belarusians in the Russian-Ukrainian conflict. In the summer of 2020 Katsyaryna covered the peaceful rallies in Minsk; and was arrested in November for broadcasting the violent dispersal of a gathering in memory of murdered protester Raman Bandarenka. She was charged alongside journalist and reporter Darya Chultsova with Part 1 of Article 342 of the Criminal Code for violating public order and both were sentenced to two years imprisonment.
Today she is recognised Belsat’s Television Person of the Year, a laureate of the BAJ ‘Free Speech’ contest and has been recently nominated by the International Women’s Media Foundation for the Courage in Journalism Awards for her brave and inspiring journalistic work.
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Vanessa Charlot is a freelance photojournalist and documentary photographer who covers stories concerning race, politics, identity, and economics intersect. She has been commissioned by the New York Times, The Guardian, The Atlantic, Rolling Stone, Buzzfeed, Vogue and many other international publications. She is recognised for her extensive coverage of the Black Lives Matter (BLM) Movement after the tragic murder of George Floyd and the impact of COVID-19. Her work uncovers truth, drives change, and raises awareness on topics such as gun laws and immigration in America.
Vanessa has been recently awarded with the Green Family Foundation Award for her outstanding contribution to journalism and has also been nominated for International Women’s Media Foundation for the Courage in Journalism Awards. Vanessa continues to inspire and is working with IWMF’s Next Gen Safety Trainers to educate and ensure safety for journalists in the media.
Vanessa Charlot on IWMF Next Gen Safety Trainers project:
“This project equips journalists with the capability to be conscious of how their identity impacts their safety within dynamic situations and for them to have the skills they need to keep themselves safe while sharing pertinent stories with the world.”
Patrícia Campos Mello is a reporter and columnist for one of Brazil’s most prominent news outlets and is a highly experienced international correspondent. Her work covers stories concerning public health and human rights in Brazil, and she has reported on the war in Afghanistan, the national elections in India, the Ebola epidemic in Sierra Leone and the refugee crisis in Syria, Libya, Iraq, Lebanon, Turkey, and Kenya.
In late 2018, Patrícia faced extreme harassment and abuse online during the Brazilian presidential election campaign. She was attacked in response to her coverage of allegations by a group of businessmen supporting then-presidential candidate Jair Bolsonaro. The abuse online and on social media consisted of threats against her and her family and fabricated news stories and doctored photos. There were also WhatsApp groups created by Bolsonaro supporters to turn up to the events she was attending to confront her in person.
Patrícia discussed her experiences at the 2019 International Press Freedom Award, opening up about the dangers and the discrimination female journalists face in Brazil:
“I have been a journalist for over 25 years, and I covered conflicts all over the world — in Libya, in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan. I never needed a bodyguard. Yet, when I was covering the elections last year in my hometown of São Paulo, Brazil, I needed a bodyguard. Until last year, I had never faced a lawsuit in my whole life. I was sued by the president, who demanded that I reveal all my sources. I was sued just for doing my job. And I’m still facing a lawsuit from one of President Bolsonaro’s supporters. I am just one among countless women journalists in Brazil who have been targeted”
Patrícia Campos Mello at the 2019 International Press Freedom Awards
Patrícia Campos Mello continues to inspire female journalists worldwide and highlights the dangers and discrimination women face working in the media.
World Humanitarian Day is a day to appreciate those who risk their lives and continue to make great sacrifices for others to create a better world. Without the important and powerful work of journalism we would never hear about the stark realities, conflict, and injustices faced across the world. These courageous and talented journalists will continue to inspire generations with their work; and their bravery and resilience will drive positive change.
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