MANILA, Philippines – The International Center for Journalists (ICFJ) on Thursday, May 24, announced Rappler CEO Maria Ressa as one of two recipients of the 2018 Knight International Journalism Awards.
Supported by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Knight International Journalism Award “recognizes excellent journalism that has made an impact.”
The ICFJ in its announcement cited Rappler’s work in reporting “on the harsh policies of President Rodrigo Duterte.”
“Rappler reported that under Duterte nearly 8,000 Filipinos have been victims of extrajudicial killings. In response to the reports, Duterte and his government have targeted Rappler, making it a major focus of its attack on press freedom,” the ICFJ said.
It added, “Ressa is now fighting the government’s move to revoke Rappler’s license and thus silence it on grounds that the site is owned by foreigners, a charge Ressa calls ridiculous.”
Aside from Ressa, the other Knight International Journalism Awards winner is Joseph Poliszuk, who reports on high-level corruption in the midst of Venezuela’s economic collapse.
The ICFJ said both Ressa and Poliszuk “have withstood harsh threats and lawsuits that could force them out of business.”
“For the first time, both Knight Awards are going to the founders of digital news sites who fearlessly pursue the truth,” ICFJ President Joyce Barnathan said.
Jennifer Preston, Knight Foundation’s vice president for journalism, said the two journalists “reinforce the principles of truth-seeking, accuracy and fearlessness, rooted in the core values of journalism, while revealing the power of digital storytelling to hold leaders to account and extend the reach of hard-to-get news, far and wide.”
This year’s Knight Award winners will be honored on November 8 at the ICFJ awards dinner in Washington, DC. – Rappler.com
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