IPI Press Freedom Hero for T&T Media Congress
VIENNA, 17 Jan. 2012 – The International Press Institute (IPI) today named two-time Pulitzer Prize winning American author and foreign affairs columnist David Rohde as its 63rd World Press Freedom Hero.
The Vienna-based group will formally present the award – which recognizes individuals who have made a significant contribution to defending and promoting press freedom, especially, but not only, if it involved acts of resistance or bravery under harsh conditions – during a special ceremony at its 2012 World Congress, set for 23-26 June in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago.
Rohde, 44, is a Reuters columnist who received his first Pulitzer Prize in 1996 for reports in the Christian Science Monitor exposing the massacre of thousands of Bosnian Muslims in Srebrenica. Bosnian Serb police arrested Rohde in 1995 at the site of a mass grave he had discovered, detained him for 10 days – initially in secret – and threatened him with espionage charges.
He was also part of a New York Times team that was awarded a Pulitzer Prize in April 2009, the Pulitzer committee said, for the newspaper’s “masterful, groundbreaking coverage of America’s deepening military and political challenges in Afghanistan and Pakistan”. The committee noted that Rohde and his colleagues frequently reported “under perilous conditions”, a statement given further weight when it was revealed months later that Rohde at the time of the award was again being held in captivity.
Read full official press release (pdf): IPI Press Freedom Hero for T&T Media Congress