Friday 22 September 2017

'We must support journalists in the face of threats ... we must not let them stand alone'

When gangs target the media, it is not just the journalists who suffer, their families hurt too, says Jimmy Guerin

FATEFUL DAY: Journalist Veronica Guerin was killed while in her car on the Naas Road in June 1996
FATEFUL DAY: Journalist Veronica Guerin was killed while in her car on the Naas Road in June 1996
Journalist Veronica Guerin

Jimmy Guerin

When I heard the frightening news of journalists' lives being under threat, my immediate thoughts were not alone with the journalists whose lives had been turned upside down, but with their brothers, sisters, spouses and extended families. It brought back some difficult and upsetting memories.

This is a most difficult time for the families of those journalists. They will now be living in fear that something terrible may happen to their loved ones. They will find themselves being more attentive to news bulletins, and being relieved that there is no bad news concerning their family member.

My family suffered an awful trauma because there had been attempts on my sister Veronica's life prior to her brutal assassination. At that time in Ireland of 1996, there was something of "it will never happen", but it did and no longer is such a threat something to be taken lightly by anyone.

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