Freedom of Expression – how should we respond to journalists being executed by governments?

In January 2019, over 7,000 people were arrested in Iran, including journalists. The Iranian judiciary sentenced Yashar Soltani to five years in prison on anti-state charges after he published a series of articles that unveiled alleged corruption in Tehran land deals which were linked to a former mayor. The execution of Ruhollah Zam, who was lured into Iraq and abducted by Iranian intelligence and sentenced to death in June 2020, has not received any condemnation from the South African government which quickly condemns Israel every time there is unrest. The exiled journalist’s work had helped inspire nationwide economic protests in 2017. He was executed in December 2020.