International15 December 2003
Launch of new Damocles Network site
The Damocles Network, the legal arm of Reporters Without Borders, is launching a new site in French and English entitled "Toolbox". Designed for professionals but also for the use of anyone interested in freedom of expression www.damocles.org carries basic texts that guarantee press freedom along with extracts from codes of ethics. The site also offers publications that can be downloaded like the Practical Guide for Journalists and the Charter for the Safety of Journalists working in War Zones or Dangerous Areas.
An "International Justice" section offers a Guide to the International Criminal Court for the use of victims (In English, French and Spanish) and advises on legal procedures to put together a case for anyone who is a victim of an international crime ("How to bring a case").
Freelance journalists covering foreign stories will find practical information on low cost insurance policies and the loan of flak jackets from Reporters Without Borders.
Documents on workshops organised by the Damocles Network can also be viewed and downloaded.
The Damocles Network was set up in December 2001, as a result of alarming figures: Nearly 500 journalists had been killed, murdered or gone missing because of their work over the past ten years. A large number of these crimes had gone unpunished, either for lack of serious investigation, financial means or political will. The Damocles Network set out to operate at all levels, in close co-operation with Reporters Without Borders, to put an end to impunity for those who murder and torture journalists.
The network also helps improve safety and protection of journalists. It also serves as a kind of think tank on all the issues and problems confronting the media.