In the last month, four journalists have gone missing in Syria, Committee to Protect Journalists reported on Tuesday.
Those journalists are Ángel Sastre, Antonio Pampliega, and José Manuel López from Spain and Jumpei Yasuda from Japan. All four are freelance journalists.
Syria has been the most deadly country in the world for journalists for the past three years. While most victims are local journalists, at least 12 international correspondents have been killed in the course of the war, according to CPJ research. More than 90 journalists have been abducted in the country since the conflict began and approximately 25 are currently missing, most of them local.
In February, Poynter’s Ben Mullin reported that several news organizations created a set of best practices for freelancers and news organizations. Those best practices include ways freelancers can try and keep themselves safe while on assignment and how news organizations should treat freelancers while they’re reporting.
The initiative was spurred by the murders of American freelance journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff at the hands of the Islamic State group last year. Their slayings, images of which were made public and disseminated widely, “demanded a constructive response on the part of the news industry,” Mahoney said.
“The spate of abductions and killings of journalists that we’ve seen over the last couple of years, particularly in the Middle East, has been horrific and demands some kind of action on the part of all of us in the news industry,” he said.