Global news media of ‘critical importance’ in documenting Israel and Gaza conflict, says SoE

Posted on: November 8, 2023 by Claire Meadows

The global news media is of “critical importance” in providing the public with accurate and verifiable news and information on the conflict in Israel and Gaza, the Society of Editors has said.

Speaking at the press freedom organisation’s annual Media Freedom Awards ceremony in London, the Society’s Executive Director Dawn Alford paid tribute to journalists killed in the region since the events of October 7th and said that many journalists worldwide continue to put their lives at risk to cover the conflict.

She said: “In recent weeks, we’ve been reminded once again of the critical importance of the global news media in documenting events in Israel and Gaza.

“Accurate, verifiable reporting is imperative during times of crisis – especially in the face of rampant misinformation and fake news online.

“Journalists continue to risk their lives to cover the conflict, and sadly more than 39 journalists have been killed  since the events of October 7th. Tonight, we pay tribute to journalists covering conflicts worldwide and the vital work of the British news media in exposing wrongdoing and holding power to account.”

Held at the iconic Banking Hall in London on Wednesday 8 November 2023, the high-profile Media Freedom Awards brought together more than 250 journalists from all sectors of the UK news media industry for a celebration of public interest and campaigning journalism. The event was attended by the Culture Secretary Luct Frazer MP and also saw Dame Esther Rantzen presented with an Outstanding Contribution to Journalism Award in recognition of a career dedicated to “supporting, uplifting and giving a voice to others.”

The awards, now in their second year, were presented by ITV News Presenter and Journalist Lucrezia Millarini with headline sponsorship from prestigious London-based art-seller Grove Gallery.

Other big winners on the night included the Telegraph which was crowned the National News Media Organisation of the Year as well as the National Investigation of the Year for its agenda-setting Lockdown Files investigation. Open-source platform Bellingcat was named the International News Media Organisation of the Year while Belfast-based Sunday Life was named the Regional News Media Organisation of the Year.

A full list of winners from the event can be found here