الثلاثاء، 27 يوليو، 2010

IFJ Demands Action to Protect Media Staff as Journalist Is Gunned Down in Greece

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) today called on Greek authorities to step up their fight against violence on media after the murder of journalist Socratis Guiolias, who was shot dead by gunmen on Monday morning in Athens. He is believed to be the first journalist murdered by extremist groups in Greece.



"We condemn this shocking murder and we call on the authorities to leave no stone unturned in the hunt for his killers," said Aidan White, IFJ General Secretary. "This is the latest act in a campaign of terror against journalists. This must not succeed. Already Greek democracy is under threat."

According to reports, journalists Socratis Guiola who worked for Thema 9.89 radio station and wrote for the blog Troktiko, was shot several times by three armed men who called at his home in Athens, on Monday morning. When he came out of his house, they fired a volley of shots, killing him instantly. They escaped in a car which was later found abandoned and torched, police sources say.

No group has claimed responsibility for the killing but the IFJ believes that there is a strong link to his work. Reports say his blog was known for exposing scandal stories and he worked closely with his countryman, Makis Triandafylopoulos who specialises in investigative journalism.
Last year, the IFJ condemned earlier violence against media after violent attacks in February 2009 on the offices of the Apogevmatin newspaper and of the private TV station, Alter TV in Athens. These attacks were blamed on members of the Sekta Epanastaton, an extremist group in Greece.



"Colleagues in Greece are understandably alarmed by this crime," added White. "The authorities must provide necessary guarantees for the safety of journalists."