The Doha Center for Media Freedom (DCMF) has expressed concern about the deteriorating working condition of journalists in Lebanon while hailing the role of Ghana’s media in the successful conduct of democratic presidential elections in that country.
The Center has called on Lebanese authorities to bring to book the attackers of TV reporter Omar Harquos, who is yet to recover fully a month after he was beaten up by young Syrian activists while covering a street rally on November 27.
“It is vital that Omar Harqous’ attackers should be tried and punished for their violent act”, a DCMF spokesperson said. “Leaving them at liberty is equivalent to giving a free hand to all those who want to silence the media.”
Meanwhile, DCMF has lauded journalists in Ghana for their responsible reporting and moderate attitude, which helped make the country’s presidential election a success. The Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) had reminded its members of their duty to be balanced and unbiased in reporting on the election.
Ahead of the poll, the GJA conducted a campaign to raise awareness of the issues involved and set up a committee to update recommendations on media coverage of elections dating from 1996. The committee included experienced journalists, legal experts and a member of the Electoral Commission.
Ransford Tetteh, GJA president, in an interview with DCMF, underscored the importance of the Ghanaian media’s contribution to the success of the presidential election. The second round of voting is to be held today.
On the other hand, a delegation from the DCMF met Harqous in Beirut on December 12, a few hours after his first meeting with the examining magistrate in charge of the case. He insisted that he wanted to see justice done, not out of a desire for revenge but “to protect all Lebanese people”.
Harqous, who works for the Lebanese TV channel Future News, is still too severely injured to go back to work, nearly a month after he was brutally attacked by members of the Syrian National Socialist Party in front of several witnesses.
Source: The Peninsula