The Journalist’s Memorial in Bayeux
76 journalists were killed in 2009. Their names are now engraved on a stone monument reading « Memorial to journalists and freedom of the press » unveiled here in Bayeux on Thursday, October 7th, 2010 by the companion of the late photographer and documentary film-maker, Christian Poveda, assassinated in El Salvador in September 2009.
For Jean-François Julliard, spokesperson for Reporters sans frontiers (RSF) (Reporters Without Borders) and founder of the freedom garden with several local and regional groups, « the situation continues to deteriorate. For example, it is the first time that 33 media professionals were assassinated simultaneously by a private militia group appointed by the local governor of the South Philippines. In 2009, RSF also noted a considerable increase in the number of arrests and condemnations of journalists and bloggers, particularly in Iran ».
Acts of violence and threats of violence have increased from 929 cases in 2008 to 1,456 in 2009. In addition to Iran, the American continent has become particularly dangerous due in large part to Mexico where the growing presence of narcotics dealers has had disastrous effects on the liberty of the press. As a result, close to 160 journalists of all origins have chosen exile.
The Journalist’s Memorial in Bayeux is unique in Europe. The site is a tree-lined memorial park where white stone slabs stand tall bearing the names of over 2,000 journalists from around the world, killed since 1944 while exercising their profession.
For further information please call the Tourism Office at 02 31 51 28 28.