“International rules already exist to protect journalists in conflict regions, but they are not always enforced”, said Reporters without Borders representative Olivier Basile, adding that the EU could do more to protect them. “Journalists who get arrested still don’t have enough diplomatic support, as was shown in Egypt”, he said. French war correspondent Anne Nivat added that journalists need help most when they return. “There have to be some conditions guaranteed, such prior training and especially psychological support when they come back”, she said.
Jean Paul Marthoz, Professor of international journalism at the University of Louvain, called on the EU institutions to introduce a “more daring” policy to protect the right to press freedom.
Marietje Schaake (ALDE, NL), highlighted the growing tendency of authoritarian regimes to repress bloggers. She also suggested regulating western information and communications technology (ICT) companies “which sometimes can become state media, like the role played by Vodafone in Egypt, shutting down communications”.