World Association of News Publishers

World’s Press Condemns Killing of Photojournalist James Foley

World’s Press Condemns Killing of Photojournalist James Foley

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The World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA) and the World Editors Forum have condemned the barbaric killing of American photojournalist James Foley and expressed their deepest condolences to his family and all those who knew and worked with him.


Paris, France and Frankfurt, Germany 20 August 2014

For immediate release


James Foley, Aleppo, Syria – 08/12. Photo: Nicole Tung.


“WAN-IFRA is appalled by the news of James Foley’s murder and condemns in the strongest possible terms this deliberate, calculated act against a courageous journalist,” said WAN-IFRA CEO, Vincent Peyrègne.

“Any armed group or individual that sees the targeting of journalists as a legitimate means of achieving violent goals is seriously misguided. The freedom of the press lives on even stronger thanks to the commitment of individuals such as Mr. Foley, and our determination to resist all forms of censorship – including murder – is all the more reinforced as we celebrate his life and work.”

Forty-year-old James Foley went missing in Syria in November 2012 from where he had been covering the unfolding humanitarian catastrophe. It was initially believed that forces loyal to the regime of Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad had taken him captive near the northwestern town of Taftanaz.

Yet on Tuesday, 19 August a video appeared on social media showing a masked Islamic State (Isis) militant beheading a man believed to be James Foley, reportedly in response to United States airstrikes against Isis fighters in northern Iraq earlier in the month.  

WAN-IFRA has recorded the deaths of at least 47 media professionals ( in Syria since the outbreak of fighting in 2011. According to reports, as many as 57 Syrian and foreign journalists are currently being held or are missing in the country, with armed groups from both sides of the conflict implicated.


For more information on WAN-IFRA’s press freedom activities, visit


WAN-IFRA, based in Paris, France, and Frankfurt, Germany, with subsidiaries in Singapore and India, is the global organisation of the world’s newspapers and news publishers. It represents more than 18,000 publications, 15,000 online sites and over 3,000 companies in more than 120 countries. Its core mission is to defend and promote press freedom, quality journalism and editorial integrity and the development of prosperous businesses.

Inquiries to: Andrew Heslop, Director, Press Freedom, WAN-IFRA, 96 bis, rue Beaubourg, 75003 Paris France. Tel: +33 1 47 42 85 29. Fax: +33 1 42 78 92 33. Email:


Andrew Heslop's picture

Andrew Heslop


2014-08-21 11:13

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In countless countries, journalists, editors and publishers are physically attacked, imprisoned, censored, suspended or harassed for their work. WAN-IFRA is committed to defending freedom of expression by promoting a free and independent press around the world. Read more ...