The Irish Independent has run a defiant front page today (12 February) responding to threats on its journalists who are being targeted by organized gangs.
The headline reads: ‘Why We Won’t be Intimidated’ and features a photo of Sunday Independent reporter, Veronica Guerin, who was gunned down in 1996 by a Dublin crime gang for writing a number of stories on their crimes.
The editorial comment on the front page reads: “Twenty years after the murder of Veronica Guerin by criminals who feared her courageous exposes of their activities, journalists working for Independent newspapers are under threat from gangsters. They did not intimidate her then, they will not succeed today.”
Journalists at the Independent News and Media title have been threatened by organized gangs in the city and the newspaper released a statement confirming that the Garda Siochána [police] had informed a number of reporters “that their safety is at risk from organized criminals.”
The threats were issued as a bloody feud between two major crime gangs erupted in Dublin. Last week the violence culminated in a shooting at a boxing weigh-in which killed one man and on Monday another man was gunned down in what police believe was a reprisal attack.
Politicians have spoken out against the threats to journalists including Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams who tweeted:
Threats to journalists have no place in our society.https://t.co/lzf4LIq47U
— Gerry Adams (@GerryAdamsSF) February 11, 2016
Fine Gael leader, Enda Kenny, also spoke out saying: “Threats to the lives of journalists is an appalling affront to democracy. We support them and all journalists today.”