NUJP hits blogger ‘Thinking Pinoy’ for ‘endangering’ photojournalist
The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) on Tuesday criticized a blogger for allegedly endangering a photojournalist covering the conflict in Marawi City.
“The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines expresses deep concern at the threats continuously being received by photojournalist Jes Aznar, whose work appears, among others, in the New York Times and is also carried by international photo agencies, over a mistaken accusation by the blog site Thinking Pinoy published by one RJ Nieto,” the media group said.
NUJP explained that Nieto accused Aznar of posting “real time” photos of government troops in Marawi City, possibly revealing their position.
“Aznar has repeatedly clarified he posted the photo in question when they were already out of the area, thus he could not have endangered the soldiers at that time,” NUJP said.
“He (Aznar) also said that he only had good intentions in posting the photo on his Facebook social media account, such as showing the public how active the government troops were in quelling the Maute and Abu Sayyaf,” the group said.
“We condemn Thinking Pinoy and Mr. Nieto for endangering a journalist, more so on unfounded reasons,” NUJP said. “We likewise condemn those who threaten our colleague who was simply doing his job.”
The group lauded journalists for bravely covering conflict in places like Marawi in order to inform Filipinos and the world.
“We urge authorities to protect Mr. Aznar from these threats and to assist him should he seek redress and accountability for those who seek to put him in danger,” NUJP said.
Aznar issued his own statement through his Facebook account.
“Let me remind the gentleman (Nieto), that these kinds of attacks to the press are outright dangerous. Especially for us who are covering this event and are actually inside the conflict zone,” he said.
“Let me also remind you that the media, fully aware of the dangers involved in covering such conflicts, are there not to be kibitzers but to do a sworn duty to keep the public informed. No more no less,” Aznar said. KS/IDL/rga
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