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Syria, Iraq most dangerous places for journalists in 2017

Syrians try to rescue those who are trapped under collapsed buildings after the Assad regime carried out air strikes in Damascus, Syria [Tarık Almasry/Anadolu Agency]

At least 65 media workers around the world have been killed doing their jobs this year, media freedom organisation Reporters Without Borders said today.

Among the dead were 50 professional journalists, seven citizen journalists and eight other media workers. The five most dangerous countries were Syria, Mexico, Afghanistan, Iraq and the Philippines.

Of those killed, 35 died in regions where armed conflict is ongoing while 30 were killed outside of such areas.

Thirty-nine of those killed were targeted for their journalistic work such as reporting on political corruption or organised crime while the other 26 were killed while working due to shelling and bomb attacks, for example.

“It’s alarming that so many journalists were murdered outside of war zones,” said Katja Gloger, a board member of Reporters Without Borders.

Rights group: 634 journalists killed in Syria since 2011

“In far too many countries perpetrators can assume they’ll get off scot-free if they’re violent towards media professionals,” she added.

The organisation said more than 300 media workers were currently in prison, with around half of those in five countries, namely Turkey, China, Syria, Iran and Vietnam.

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