Press Release

Director-General condemns killing of journalist and fixer Bogdan Bitik in Ukraine

02 May 2023

Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of UNESCO, has condemned the killing of Ukrainian journalist and fixer Bogdan Bitik in the region of Kherson in southern Ukraine on 26 April. 

“I condemn the killing of Bogdan Bitik. Journalists and media professionals working in conflict zones must be protected, and those who commit crimes against them prosecuted,” said Audrey Azoulay, Director General of UNESCO. “As stated in UN Security Council Resolution 2222/2015, any specific targeting of journalists or associated personnel covering a conflict constitutes a crime.” 

Bogdan Bitik was reportedly killed by sniper fire while working as a fixer for Corrado Zunino, a correspondent of the Italian daily La Repubblica, who was also injured. Zunino was reported to be wearing a vest marked “press” at the time of the attack. 

Since the beginning of the war, UNESCO helped journalists in Ukraine to continue their work safely, providing them with protective equipment, training them on reporting in war zones and supporting the creation of media centres. 

Globally, UNESCO promotes the safety of journalists through global awareness-raising, capacity building and by coordinating the implementation of the UN Plan of Action on the Safety of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity. 

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UNESCO observatory of killed journalists

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