(File photo)

MANILA – The Department of Justice (DOJ) on Thursday assured that the administration of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. will continue to vigorously pursue all incidents of attacks on journalists as it fully recognizes journalism’s role in nation-building.

DOJ spokesman Jose Dominic Clavano IV made the assurance following the release of the country’s supposed ranking in terms of newspersons’ safety by a private New York based organization.

“This Index will not stop the new administration from investigating and prosecuting work-related killing and harassment of journalists,” he said in a statement.

“We understand the importance of good journalism and we will take concrete steps in protecting those that simply want to keep the government and its officials in check. It is a right we must respect and preserve,” Clavano added.

The 2022 Global Impunity Index by the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) noted that up to 80 percent of 263 incidents of murders of journalists it documented worldwide over the past 10 years remains unsolved.

The CPJ report placed the country seventh among the top 10 countries on its list with 14 slain journalists.

On top of the most unsafe countries for journalists according to the CPJ is Somalia with 19 unsolved murders of journalists in a population of 16.4 million, followed by Syria (16 deaths,18.3 million), South Sudan (5 deaths, 11.4 million), Afghanistan (17 deaths, 39.8 million), Iraq (17 deaths, 41.2million) and Mexico (28 deaths in a population of 130.3 million).

The Philippines ranked just above Myanmar (5 death, 54.8 million population), Brazil (13 deaths, 214 million), Pakistan (9 deaths, 225.2 million), and India (20 deaths, 1.3 billion). (PNA)