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 You are in: Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs: Press Relations Office > Press Releases (Other) > 2005 > May
Press Statement
Richard Boucher, Spokesman
Washington, DC
May 3, 2005


Fifteenth World Press Freedom Day

The United States is pleased to celebrate World Press Freedom Day. Events during the last year again demonstrated the crucial role the press plays to advance the struggle for freedom. In Ukraine, the courage of journalists who rejected attempts by the previous regime to manipulate reports about the presidential election helped launch the Orange Revolution and led directly to the countryís democratic breakthrough. In the Kyrgyz Republic and Lebanon independent media provided citizens with crucial information to defend their right to choose their own governments.

In support of freedom of expression, the United States works with foreign journalists and media organizations to help build their capacity to gather and report news. The Departmentís Human Rights and Democracy Fund annually provides $3 million in grants for journalism training, and the development of independent printing presses, and radio and TV stations. The International Visitor Program and other U.S.-sponsored exchange programs assist foreign journalists in developing professional contacts with their U.S. counterparts.

Journalism is often a dangerous profession. Today, we take this opportunity to express solidarity with the brave journalists who risk their lives to inform the public and express their views. We reaffirm our support for the many organizations that work to protect the rights of independent media and support the work of journalists around the world. The United States will continue working to advance press freedom as a key part of our efforts to promote democracy and human rights.

2005/464

Released on May 3, 2005

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