Last Updated: Friday, 24 November 2017, 11:39 GMT

Maguindanao death toll worst for press in recent history

Publisher Committee to Protect Journalists
Publication Date 25 November 2009
Cite as Committee to Protect Journalists, Maguindanao death toll worst for press in recent history, 25 November 2009, available at: [accessed 25 November 2017]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

New York, November 25, 2009 – A brutal election-related massacre in the Philippine province of Maguindanao on Monday appears to be single deadliest event for the press since 1992, when CPJ began keeping detailed records on journalist deaths.

The New York Times and The Associated Press reported today that at least 18 of the victims have been preliminarily identified as journalists. The overall death toll rose to 57 today, news reports said. Searchers were still discovering bodies and establishing identities. CPJ is working with local and international media support groups to extend assistance to the families of those slain on Monday.

"Even as we tally the dead in this horrific massacre, our initial research indicates that this is the deadliest single attack on the press ever documented by CPJ," said executive director Joel Simon. "While the scale is unprecedented, the backdrop is all too familiar. President Arroyo must commit the full resources of her government to confronting once and for all the culture of impunity which perpetuates this kind of terrible violence."

According to CPJ research, the deadliest prior event for the press came in Iraq on October 12, 2006. Eleven employees of Al-Shaabiya television were killed in an attack at the station's Baghdad studios. Five of the victims were journalists, and six were media support workers. CPJ has compiled a list of other incidents in which many journalists were killed.

Copyright notice: © Committee to Protect Journalists. All rights reserved. Articles may be reproduced only with permission from CPJ.

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