Press Freedom

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Many countries lack not just a right to freedom of the press, but any semblance of the rule of law. Governments and other powerbrokers see the press as a threat and often target journalists with violence, intimidation and imprisonment to silence them. Yet, more often than not, we get the truth about what is happening in the world from journalists who are willing to put themselves at risk in order to report the truth. The IWMF recognizes the critical role women journalists play in supporting press freedom around the world by supporting those who are targeted for their work, offering them the international recognition and support in times of emergency. At the core of the IWMF’s mission is the belief that press are not truly free unless women have an equal voice.


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“We go to remote war zones to report what is happening. The public have a right to know what our government, and our armed forces, are doing in our name. Our mission is to speak the truth to power. We send home that first rough draft of history. We can and do make a difference in exposing the horrors of war and especially the atrocities that befall civilians.”

- Marie Colvin, UK – Courage in Journalism Award 2000
  • Featured Story Featured Story

    World Press Freedom Index 2015

    Top of the list, as so often, are three Scandinavian countries: Finland, Norway, and Denmark. At the other end of the scale, Turkmenistan, North Korea and Eritrea, in last place, were the worst performers. The United States is ranked 49th (down three places), Russia 152 (down four places), Iran 173rd (unchanged) and China 176th (down one place).

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  • Levine2-thn Heidi Levine wins Anja Niedringhaus AwardMarch 24, 2015 — The IWMF has named freelance photographer Heidi Levine as the inaugural winner of the Anja Niedringhaus Courage in Photojournalism Award. The award was created to honor the courage and dedication of Pulitzer Prize-winning AP photographer Anja Niedringhaus, who was killed while reporting in Afghanistan in 2014. “We are proud to honor …

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  • KhadijaIsmayilova-thn Courage Awardee Khadija Ismayilova Remains Detained in AzerbaijanUpdate – March 11, 2015 In a letter written in prison, Khadija Ismayilova writes that the American authorities’ boycott of Russia is leading to the Azeri authorities’ eagerness to offer oil and gas. This brings more money to both the Azerbaijani budget currently afflicted by declining oil prices and the coffers of the corrupt Aliyev …

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  • Hacked-thn IWMF Website HackedSeptember 12, 2014 — The IWMF website suffered a complex brute-force attack last Friday, September 5, 2014. The website that features the work of the IWMF and promotes the empowerment of women journalists worldwide, was defaced and most of its original content destroyed. Using password-cracking software, a hacker operating from Turkey attacked iwmf.org, a WordPress-based …

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  • Saeed_thumbnail Nazeeha Saeed – Raising her voice for journalists in BahrainJuly 8, 2014 — When Bahrani reporter Nazeeha Saeed went to cover an anti-government protest May 22, 2011, in the capital city Manama, she anticipated seeing a resurgence in public resistance after military forces had shut down demonstrations two months earlier. Saeed did not expect to be summoned to a police station where she would …

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  • Yu-thn IWMF calls for release of detained Chinese journalist Gao YuUpdate – April 17, 2015 According to media reports, Gao Yu was convicted today of ‘revealing state secrets’ and sentenced to seven years in prison. Gao’s lawyer announced that she would appeal the court’s decision. May 8, 2014 – The International Women’s Media Foundation (IWMF) is gravely concerned over the arrest of 1995 Courage in …

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  • 2013CourageLA-thn IWMF joins boycott against Beverly Hills HotelMay 6, 2014 – The International Women’s Media Foundation (IWMF) is joining the international boycott against the Beverly Hills Hotel and has pulled its Courage in Journalism Awards ceremony from the venue. “We, the IWMF, can no longer hold an event at a venue whose owner stands for the violation of the very human rights …

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  • Kathy-Anja-thn Reporting from the Front Lines of WarJuly 18, 2012 — Courage Award Winners Kathy Gannon and Anja Niedringhaus have gone where no other foreign journalist had gone before: embedding with the Afghan National Army. AP reporter Kathy Gannon (Canada) is no stranger to reporting from a position of unique insight. Two weeks into the U.S.-led invasion of Afghanistan in 2001, she …

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