The International Press Institute (IPI) today joins its partner organisations in the Media Freedom Rapid Response (MFRR) in publishing a mission report focusing on key challenges facing press freedom in Italy.
The report followed a three-day fact-finding mission to Rome and Naples by the MFRR organisations between 4-6 April 2022, which was led by the Osservatorio Balcani e Caucaso Transeuropa.
The visit focused on two central topics: violence, intimidation and other threats to journalists emanating from organised crime, and vexatious lawsuits, SLAPPs and the urgent need for comprehensive reform of civil and criminal defamation in Italy.
The delegation’s findings were published today and launched at an event organised by the MFRR featuring a representative of the European Commission, as well as the Italian Federation of Journalists (FNSI), Articolo 21, the Order of Journalists and the Journalists’ Union of Campania.
During the mission, meetings were held with the Constitutional Court, Members of Parliament, the police, and several journalists, freelancers and reporters living under police escort due to threats from the mafia.
Throughout the meetings with local stakeholders, it was confirmed that, taken together, these threats serve to undermine independent and critical journalism and the freedom of the press in the country while having a significant detrimental impact on individual journalists’ safety and their professional and private lives.
While the mission identified several good practices and positive developments that show recognition of the problem and a way forward towards its resolution, each needs further action to ensure a truly free and safe working environment for Italy’s journalistic community.
🇮🇹 #Italy: IPI today joins @MediaFreedomEU partners in publishing our new report examining the safety of journalists & threats from abusive lawsuits in Italy. This follows our three-day fact-finding mission in April. @FnsiSocial @Artventuno @ODG_CNOGhttps://t.co/B7p6YVVS7Z pic.twitter.com/i2qd1MVnsz
— IPI – The Global Network for Independent Media (@globalfreemedia) May 11, 2022
This mission report was coordinated by the Media Freedom Rapid Response (MFRR), a Europe-wide mechanism which tracks, monitors and responds to violations of press and media freedom in EU Member States and Candidate Countries.