Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Amal Clooney ‘honoured’ to take up media freedom role

Amal Clooney (Andrew Milligan/PA)
Amal Clooney (Andrew Milligan/PA)

Amal Clooney says she is “honoured” to be appointed a special envoy on media freedom.

The international human rights lawyer, who has shot to fame as the wife of George Clooney, has been made special envoy by Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt.

Mr Hunt said: “Violence against journalists has reached alarming levels globally and we cannot turn a blind eye.

“The media has a crucial role to play in holding the powerful to account. There is no escaping the fact that draconian and outdated laws around the world are being used to restrict the ability of the media to report the truth.

“Amal Clooney’s leading work on human rights means she is ideally placed to ensure this campaign has real impact for journalists and the free societies who depend on their work.”

The international human rights lawyer said she was “honoured” to have been given the role.

She will also chair a panel of legal experts, to find ways to prevent and reverse media abuses.

“Through my legal work defending journalists I have seen first-hand the ways in which reporters are being targeted and imprisoned in an effort to silence them and prevent a free media,” she said.

“I welcome the UK Government’s focus on this issue at a time when journalists are being killed and imprisoned at record levels all over the world, and I look forward to working on new legal initiatives that can help to ensure a more effective international response.”

Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt
Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office said that 2018 was the deadliest year for journalists, with 99 killed, 348 detained and 60 taken hostage by non-state groups.

The announcement comes ahead of an international conference on media freedom to be held in the UK in July.

Amnesty International UK said that “the UK needs to address concerns here at home if it is to have credibility as an international champion for media freedom”.

It highlighted the case of two Belfast reporters arrested in connection with a documentary exposing police collusion.

Kate Allen, director of Amnesty International UK, said: “We welcome the news of Amal Clooney’s appointment, and hope it will help ensure the UK Government makes a difference for the brave journalists exposing human rights violations around the world.

“Globally, journalists and media outlets are under increasing attack for their vital work. Concerted international effort is needed to ensure the safety of media workers, and we need to see those who harass or attack them brought to justice.

“However, the UK needs to address concerns here at home if it is to have credibility as an international champion for media freedom.

“The sinister arrest of journalists Trevor Birney and Barry McCaffrey – facing the prospect of serious charges simply for their vital work in uncovering police collusion in the Loughinisland massacre in Northern Ireland – leaves us in no doubt that press freedom in the UK is at grave risk.”

Already a subscriber? Sign in

[[title]]

[[text]]