The Public Media Alliance urges the government of Nauru to lift its ban on Australian Broadcasting Corporation journalists assigned to cover the Pacific Islands Forum in September.

“The ban is an unwarranted and brazen attack on media freedom in the Pacific at a time when independent and robust journalism is needed more than ever in the region”, said the PMA’s President Paul Thompson, CEO and Editor in Chief of Radio New Zealand (RNZ).

The Pacific Islands Forum is a regional event and the ABC is the public broadcaster of a Pacific Islands Forum Member.  The PMA calls on the government of Nauru to reconsider its position and allow ABC entry to be able to cover the forum.

Paul Thompson, CEO of Radio New Zealand (RNZ) and the President of PMA.

The PMA also urges the Forum Secretariat to make an appeal to the hosts not to go ahead with the ban in order to allow free and independent reporting of the event.

Referring to the importance of media freedom across the wider region, Thompson said:

“The Pacific is facing enormous challenges including the effects of climate change and the competing interests of great powers in the region. It is crucial at such testing times that all Pacific nations and the forum support independent coverage by the news media of these issues.”

Listen | PMA President discusses concerns over Nauru ban
Read | Nauru blocks ABC access to Pacific Islands Forum

Header image: ABC South Brisbane. Credits: Ash Kyd/Creative Commons