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Lyra McKee's murder shows we must do more to protect journalists, says Jeremy Hunt

Shot: Lyra McKee
Shot: Lyra McKee

By Craig Simpson

Jeremy Hunt has said action needs to be taken to defend journalism in the wake of Lyra McKee's murder.

The Conservative leadership candidate made the reference while speaking at the Global Conference For Media Freedom in London.

He also announced plans to protect Press freedom and said there would be a follow-up event in Canada to check on the progress of the initiative.

He said: "We will have another conference next year hosted by Chrystia Freeland (Canadian minister for foreign affairs) which I obviously hope to attend as Prime Minister."

Mr Hunt said the nation is still coming to terms with the death of Ms McKee in Londonderry and action would be taken to defend the Press.

Ms McKee was shot dead by the New IRA in April as she observed street disorder.

Mr Hunt said: "The UK with other governments are setting up an international task force to help young democracies develop their media freedom."

He added that the UK would not exempt itself from duties to the Press, highlighting the death of Ms McKee as an example of the need to help protect journalists.

In the UK, a national committee will be established for the protection of journalists, with a national action plan created to tackle threats.

Culture Secretary Jeremy Wright said: "The committee will champion journalists' ability to safely carry out their important roles in society and to continue to hold the powerful to account.

"This is part of our broader commitment to ensuring the future sustainability of high-quality, public interest news."

Belfast Telegraph


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