International press freedom organisation Reporters Without Borders (RWB) expressed on Wednesday serious concern over "the persistent threats to journalists in Libya," warning of the growing dangers facing press professionals in that country.
RWB cited a spate of attacks against journalists in Tripoli and Benghazi, ranging from threats and intimidation to attempted murder. "Reporters Without Borders is dismayed and alarmed by the constant threats to journalists in Libya, who have to work in an increasingly dangerous environment in which carrying a camera, hosting a TV programme or writing an article arouses the suspicions of the various armed groups, and possibly violent reactions," it said in a statement here.
RWB noted that the "prevailing chaos" in Benghazi was fostering an atmosphere if lawlessness which puts reporters in danger once they report attacks or violence. But attacks were not confined to Benghazi and journalists have also been targeted in the capital, Tripoli.
Since the start of 2014, Reporters Without Borders said that it has been called upon to help three journalists to flee Libya because of threats against them. Those who remain do so at great risk, RWB pointed out. "Threats, abductions and various forms of violence continue to take a toll on the existence of those journalists who have decided to keep working regardless of the risks," according to the statement.
"Reporters Without Borders salutes the courage and determination of the Libyan journalists who fight for the right to information to be recognized and respected in Libya," it added.
The press body stressed once again "the crucial importance of a Constitution that provides solid guarantees for freedom of expression, opinion and information." RWB called on Libyan authorities to quickly adopt legislation to prevent violation of freedom of information and to end impunity in Libya.