International training course for prosecutors on crimes against journalists


The International Association of Prosecutors (IAP) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), in partnership with the Siracusa International Institute for Criminal Justice and Human Rights (SII) and the National Association of Attorneys General, are organizing an international training course for prosecutors on investigating and prosecuting crimes against journalists and the protection of freedom of expression.

The five-day training will take place in the headquarters of the Siracusa Institute, in Siracusa, Italy, during February 14 – 18, 2022.

The training course is being organized to build on the Guidelines for Prosecutors on Cases of Crimes Against Journalists, developed by IAP and UNESCO and now available in 18 languages. With close to 9 out of 10 cases of killings of journalists in the world remaining judicially unresolved according to UNESCO data, these guidelines aim to enhance the knowledge and capacities of prosecutors to investigate and prosecute crimes and attacks against journalists.

The training course will bring together 23 prosecutors and representatives of training academies coming from Africa, Arab region, Asia, Eastern Europe and Latin America.

The overall purpose of the course is to provide participants with operational tools for investigating and prosecuting crimes against journalists and media workers, and explore mechanisms for the protection of journalists and their sources, victims, and witnesses. Notably, specific threats against women journalists and landmark cases of gender-based crimes will also be addressed during the training. The course will further contribute to enhancing international and regional cooperation by facilitating the establishment of an informal network of prosecutors specialized in the field.

The training course will be delivered in a series of plenary and workshop sessions, each one exploring specific topics related to the overall subject matter. High-level trainers will address the key thematic areas, while invited experts (chosen among prosecutors, investigators, investigative journalists and media experts) will stimulate discussions to foster exchange of best practices between the participants.