INSI news in February

February marked a major change at INSI as we announced our new director - Elena Cosentino. She replaces Hannah Storm who is leaving INSI in March.

Elena has extensive experience in news and current affairs, covering natural disasters, wars, migration, drug trafficking, terrorism and organised crime.

"I feel honoured to have been chosen to lead INSI at a time when 'inconvenient' journalism comes under threat from new and, at times, unexpected quarters," Elena said.

"I passionately believe that protecting journalists, and their ability to do their job, is a fundamental responsibility of any democracy worthy of its name. Yet journalists are still being targeted, largely with impunity, the world over. 

"For more than 15 years, INSI's staff have provided invaluable support to journalists and news organisations in the firm belief that safety and media freedom go hand in hand. I look forward to strengthening INSI's unique role, helping media organisations support and protect their staff in a strategic, pragmatic and effective way, so that journalists can keep fulfilling their crucial role as watchdogs unhindered and free from harm.” 

INSI chair Sue Inglish said:

"Elena’s first hand knowledge of working in high risk environments will enable INSI to build on the achievements of recent years, at a time when journalists face increasing threats as they go about their work."

Welcome to INSI Elena and we'll miss you Hannah.

Afganistan: the world's most dangerous country for journalists

Journalists Shafiqullah Arya and Rahimullah Rahmani were shot and killed by two unidentified men who entered the office of Radio Hamsada, a local radio station in Afghanistan, the most dangerous country for journalists in 2018. The men were live on air when they were attacked on 5 February.

Populism and 'Gilets Jaunes' On Agenda At INSI Meeting

Agence France-Presse hosted us for our latest News Safety Group meeting for INSI members at which we discussed the recent protests of the ‘gilets jaunes’ in Paris and across France and the safety outlook for journalists covering the rise of populism across Europe.

We were grateful to AFP for hosting this event which was extremely well attended by international and French media.

Other highlights of the month included one of our regular members' webinars. This time we were joined by Marcelo Moreira from TV Globo in Brazil to discuss Jair Bolsonaro’s first month in power and the current safety situation for journalists in the country.

Image by AFP