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Panpa Bulletin : February 2006
February 2006 PANPA BULLETIN | 7 NEWS MAJOR New Zealand news agency and newspaper companies are sending big reporting and photog- raphy teams to cover the March 15-26 Melbourne Commonwealth Games. APN New Zealand is sending 12 people including four photogra- phers, a picture editor, six reporters and an IT support person. Wayne Harman, managing editor, APN New Zealand National Publishing, said six months of planning should ensure a smooth operation. Harman said this team would be working closely with APN Australia and sharing with them accommo- dation in the media centre. APN had set up their communications at the centre earlier. Covering the games at Melbourne will be the first opportunity, said Harman, for the two trans-Tasman APN groups to work as a team in setting up and running such a major operation. The country's national news agency, the New Zealand Press As- sociation is for the first time sending a photographer with five reporters to provide coverage of the Com- monwealth Games. News Editor, Kevin Norquay will lead the NZPA team. He also led the agency's team at the Athens Olympics. NZPA's editor Nick Brown said that his team in Melbourne will be sharing office space and commu- nications support with Associated Press of America as was the case at the Athens Games. Fairfax NZ is sending seven re- porters and two photographers. While The Press sports editor Coen Lammers will be team leader on the spot, overall control will be in the hands of Fairfax NZ general manager sport, Trevor McKewen, back in New Zealand. The New Zealanders will be working closely with their Fairfax Australian counterparts and build- ing upon the kind of trans-Tasman Fairfax co-operation begun suc- cessfully at the Athens Olympic Games. An instance of that coop- eration is the New Zealanders will be enjoying use of Fairfax Australia laptops and IT support at the Mel- bourne media centre. Training will be provided too. Peter O'Hara, Fairfax NZ editor- in-chief, sees all Fairfax NZ news- papers sharing of the output from the company's editorial and picture team at the Games as indicative of the fresh approach of group report- ing that has been growing within Fairfax NZ over the past 12 months. This includes the group's own Wirestream internal news agency service. Fairfax NZ newspapers use Wirestream to swap news and fea- tures immediately items have been sub-edited. Editors' messages of approval for thequality and volum of Wirestream services heartened O'Hara. In future, said O'Hara, there may be opportu- nity to provide Wirestream to other media. Wirestream was organised by the former editor of NZPA, John Crowley. 2005 proved to be the most dan- gerous year on record for journal- ists working not only in the Asia- Pacific region but also worldwide, according to the International Federation of Journalists' (IFJ) an- nual report into the killing of me- dia staff. "2005 was a year of tragedy and the targeting of journalists in the Asia-Pacific region," said IFJ presi- dent Christopher Warren. Of the grim total of 150 journal- ists and media workers killed in 2005, some 36 were from the Asia- Pacific region. The Philippines once again earned its place the most dan- gerous Asia-Pacific country for journalists to work in with 10 kill- ings, second only to war-torn Iraq where 35 media workers were killed. While almost all of the kill- ers of the Philippines journalists continue to escape any form of justice. Once more, South Asia is the most dangerous region within the Asia-Pacific, with journalists being killed in Afghanistan (2), Bangladesh (3), India (3), Pakistan (6), Sri Lanka (4) and Nepal (2). The massive earthquake that struck South Asia was responsible for the deaths of three journalists. Worldwide, some 61 journalists and media workers were killed when disaster struck while on as- signment - 48 of them alone in a Tehran plane crash where ques- tions are being asked about the safety of the military aircraft in which they were traveling. But disturbingly, the IFJ report says that around 89 journalists and media people were killed "in the line of duty" - many assassi- nated by ruthless killers working for political gangs or criminals. The report says more than 90 per cent of these cases do not re- sult in serious investigations by authorities with only a handful of the killers are ever being brought to trial. A combination of police corruption, judicial incompe- tence and political indifference creates a culture of neglect when it comes to media deaths, says the IFJ. "Impunity in the killing of jour- nalists remains the intolerable scandal of our times that can no longer be ignored by the interna- tional community," said IFJ gen- eral secretary Aidan White. The IFJ has called for action by the United Nations Security Council and has pressed Secretary General Kofi Annan to mobilise governments to act against the tar- geting and killing of journalists. The IFJ report this year includes information on the IFJ's solidar- ity and assistance program, the IFJ Safety Fund. 100,000 euro was raised during a special appeal at the beginning of 2005 in response to the Tsunami disaster in 2004 in which around 89 journalists and media staff were reported dead or missing. In addition the fund made payments to the families and victims of killings in more than 25 countries as well as to victims of the Pakistan earthquake disaster in which three journalists died. The IFJ has created a special disaster relief fund in the name of former IFJ senior vice presi- dent and chair of the European Federation of Journalists, Gustl 2005 dangerous year for Asia-Pacific journalists Adam Pine winning gold medal. at the Commonwealth Games Swimming Trials at Melbourne. Fairfax Photos: Vince Caligiuri NZ's big commitment to Commonwealth Games