Reporters Without Borders (RSF) announced today its position condemning the presidential office’s action to prevent MBC reporters from boarding the presidential plane during President Yoon Seok-yeol’s tour.
In a statement sent to an MBC reporter, Reporters Without Borders East Asia director Cedric Albiani said, “Even the most senior elected officials should not directly decide which media can report on them or what questions are appropriate.” .
Reporters Without Borders also urged the immediate resumption of the so-called ‘door stepping’, an abbreviated press conference on the way to work by President Yoon, which the President’s Office said would be suspended.
They added, “President Yoon’s summary press conference was an acceptable measure that could contribute to securing transparency toward the media.”
Korea’s Press Freedom Index, published every April by Reporters Without Borders, ranks 43rd, the highest among Asian countries.
■ The full text of the statement sent by Reporters Without Borders (RSF) is released.
Reporters Without Borders (RSF) urges President Seok-yeol Yun to reverse his decision to deny a reporter from MBC, a major public broadcaster in the Korean media, aboard the presidential plane.
“Even the most elected representative (president) should not decide which media can report on them and what questions are relevant,” said RSF East Asia Director Cedric Albiani. “Journalists play an essential role in democratic countries. We must often ask difficult questions in the public interest.”
RSF also urges President Seok-Yeol Yoon to resume his daily abbreviated press conference. The brief press conference was an acceptable plan introduced by President Yoon when he took office, and it contributes to ensuring transparency for the media.
Reporters Without Borders (RSF) calls on President Yoon to reverse his decision to bar the journalists of public broadcaster MBC, an essential element of South Korea’s news landscape, from boarding the presidential plane.
“Even the highest elected representative should not decide which media can report on them or which questions are suitable to be asked,” says the RSF East Asia Bureau Head Cedric Alviani. “Journalists have an essential function to play in democracies and they must often ask difficult questions in the public interest.”
RSF also calls for the reinstatement of the president’s daily meetings with the press, a commendable initiative he took when stepping into office, and which by nature could only contribute to a greater transparency towards the media.