Nepal yet again fails to report to the UN on status of judicial action on the killings of journalistsWe are waiting for updates from the Home Ministry, Communication Ministry says.
While the world marked the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists on Saturday, Nepal is among the countries that haven’t responded to the UNESCO’s request to inform it about the judicial proceedings undertaken against the killings of journalists.
Nepal hadn’t responded to a similar request even last year. Along with Nepal, India, the Maldives and Sri Lanka from South Asia have joined the war-hit countries like Congo, Libya, South Sudan and Haiti in not complying with the request, according to a UNESCO report published on Friday.
Guy Berger, director at the Division of Freedom of Expression and Media Development at the UNESCO headquarters, through the Nepali Embassy in France, on April 2 requested for the response by May 30.
Officials at the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology say they are still in the process of reporting.
“We are waiting for the updates from the Ministry of Home Affairs,” Rishi Ram Tiwari, spokesperson for the Communication Ministry, told the Post. Tiwari, however, said he was unaware why the ministry did not respond the previous year.
According to the UNESCO, 1,010 journalists were killed in 56 of its member states between 2006 and 2017 and 893 cases related to them remain unresolved.
The record of the Federation of Nepali Journalists shows eight journalists were killed during the period. The culprits of the murder of Uma Singh, Yadav Poudel, Ram Prasad Bhattarai and Arun Singhaniya are behind the bars. However, the families of Birendra Sah from Bara, Jamim Shah from Kathmandu, Devi Prasad Dhital from Dang and Pushkar Bahadur Shrestha from Birgunj killed during the period have yet to be brought to book.
The federation’s record also shows that the whereabouts of five journalists who have been missing since 2006 are still unknown. The government is yet to find out the status of the missing—Milan Nepali from Kathmandu, Sarlahi’s Chitra Narayan Shreshta, Prakash Singh Thakur from Kanchanpur, Madan Paudel from Taplejung and Teju Khadka from Bajura.
According to the UNESCO report, 88 percent cases of the killings of journalists remain unresolved worldwide.
“The overwhelming majority of cases of the killings of journalists recorded by UNESCO remain unresolved, with perpetrators of violent acts against journalists walking freely,” reads the report.