WHEREAS, on July 21, 2022, the Federal Public Prosecutor's Office (MPF) charged Amarildo da Costa Oliveira, Oseney da Costa de Oliveira and Jefferson da Silva Lima with double murder and concealment of the bodies of indigenous activist Bruno Pereira and British journalist Dom Phillips - a contributor to The Guardian; that Pereira and Phillips were killed on June 5, 2022, while traveling by boat in the Vale do Javari (AM) region, near the Brazilian border with Peru and Colombia, where the Vale do Javari Indigenous Land is located
WHEREAS, five people were charged by the Civil Police and four of them were charged by the Public Ministry of Ceará for the murder, on February 7, 2022, of communicator Givanildo Oliveira - creator of the independent news website Pirambu News, in Ceará; that Oliveira was killed after publishing on his website the arrest of a murder suspect; that one of the accused was arrested and, as of August, three others were at large
WHEREAS, between January and September 2022, the Brazilian Association of Investigative Journalism (Abraji) recorded 70 attacks on women journalists, 61.4% of which were considered stigmatizing speeches to destroy the morale and credibility of female professionals; that 88.4% of the verbal attacks originated or resonated on the internet; and that 47.4% of the online stigmatizing speeches were published by state actors
WHEREAS, although the Protection Program for Human Rights Defenders, Communicators and Environmentalists, was expanded to include journalists, its structure does not meet the protection needs of communication professionals, and since 2018, only seven communicators have been taken in; that the program has not been updated for aggressions and attacks, and has been weakened in recent years with budget cuts and staff substitutions
WHEREAS, at least 15 bills have been introduced in the National Congress providing for the federalization of crimes against journalists and increased penalties in cases where the victims are communicators in the exercise of their profession - but no such law has been passed
WHEREAS, the trial of the five defendants for the murder of journalist Valério Luiz - killed on July 5, 2012 in Goiânia, State of Goiás, has been postponed four times; the next scheduled date is November 7, 2022
WHEREAS, the State has not complied with the recommendation of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights to reopen the investigation into the sponsors of the murder of journalist Manoel Leal de Oliveira - killed in Itabuna, Bahia, on January 14, 1998; and that since then there has been an increase in violence against communicators in the exercise of their profession
WHEREAS, the masterminds of the crimes against Aristeu Guida da Silva, killed on May 12, 1995 in the municipality of São Fidélis, State of Rio de Janeiro; Manoel Leal de Oliveira - killed in January 1998 in Itabuna, Bahia; Ivan Rocha - disappeared in April 1991 in Teixeira de Freitas, Bahia; and Reinaldo Coutinho da Silva, disappeared in April 1991 in Teixeira de Freitas, Bahia; Reinaldo Coutinho da Silva - killed on August 29, 1995 in São Gonçalo, Rio de Janeiro; Edgar Lopes de Faria, killed on October 29, 1997 in Campo Grande, Mato Grosso do Sul; and José Carlos Mesquita, killed on March 10, 1998 in Ouro Preto do Oeste, Rondônia
WHEREAS, Principle 4 of the Chapultepec Declaration states: "Murder, terrorism, kidnapping, coercion, intimidation, unjust imprisonment of journalists, physical destruction of the media, violence of any kind, and impunity for perpetrators severely curtail freedom of expression and of the press. These acts must be promptly investigated and severely punished"
THE 78TH IAPA GENERAL ASSEMBLY RESOLVES
To request support for the prompt trial of those accused of the murder of journalist Valério Luiz de Oliveira, without further delay - otherwise the case could go unpunished.
To request exemplary punishment for the murderers of journalist Dom Phillips and indigenous activist Bruno Pereira, considering that death threats and attacks on human rights defenders in the region have increased in recent years.
To demand the discussion and approval of bills in the House of Representatives and in the Senate to increase penalties for crimes against communicators in the exercise of their profession - as well as the support from the Federal Police to investigate cases in which there is local involvement of politicians and other authorities.
To request the adoption of measures to guarantee the full implementation of the Program for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, Communicators and Environmentalists.
To request that the demands of the Brazilian Committee of Human Rights Defenders (CBDDH) for greater transparency and publicity in all actions of the Program for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, Communicators and Environmentalists be met.
To request that the work security of communicators be guaranteed, as requested in the Letter of Commitment of 11 organizations, in the run-up to the presidential and gubernatorial elections - the second round of which is scheduled for October 30, 2022.
To reinforce and support the recommendations made by Cristina Zahar, representative of Abraji at the preparatory event for the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of the United Nations - held on August 30, 2022 in Geneva; among them, the approval of a Law for the Protection of Journalists and Communicators that includes ways to combat gender-based and online violence; the establishment of mechanisms so that police and prosecutors can ensure the investigation and the accountability for perpetrators in crimes against journalists and communicators.
To request the State to update the Aristeu Guida da Silva Primer - developed in response to a recommendation by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights - and disseminate it widely, especially among social movements and organizations, communication and law courses, politicians and other public authorities, to encourage good practices in relations with the press, and to provide guidance on verbal attacks, aggression and other crimes against communicators in the exercise of their profession - making it easily accessible and available free of charge.
To request the State to comply with the recommendations of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in situations of threats, attacks and murders of communicators, especially in the cases of Manoel Leal de Oliveira and Aristeu Guida da Silva - denounced by the IAPA.
To demand the identification and exemplary punishment for all those implicated in the aggressions, threats, attacks and murders of communicators in the exercise of their profession - including the intermediaries and the masterminds of the crimes.