Jamal Khashoggi is Time’s 2018 Person of the Year

‘The Guardians’: Jamal Khashoggi and other murdered and imprisoned journalists become Time’s 2018 Person of the Year

  • Time has named its 2018 Person of the Year as ‘guardians and the war on truth’ 
  • Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi and the Capital Gazette are among the group
  • Philippine journalist Maria Ressa and two Reuters journalists complete the list
  • Time recognizes the person or group of people who most influenced the news and the world ‘for better or for worse’ during the past year 

Time’s 2018 Person of the Year has been awarded to Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi and other ‘guardians and the war on truth’.

The ‘guardians’ are slain Saudi journalist Khashoggi; the Capital Gazette in Annapolis, Maryland, where five people were shot and killed at the newspaper’s offices in June; Philippine journalist Maria Ressa, who has been arrested; and two Reuters journalists detained in Myanmar for nearly a year, Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo. 

Time’s editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal made the announcement Tuesday on NBC’s ‘Today’ show. The magazine recognizes the person or group of people who most influenced the news and the world ‘for better or for worse’ during the past year.

It says the 2018 group ‘are representatives of a broader fight by countless others around the world’.

The decision to honor journalists comes after a record number – 262 worldwide – were imprisoned in 2017, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. 

Khashoggi was a contributor to the Washington Post residing in the United States before he was murdered

There has been speculation that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman ordered the hit on Khashoggi (pictured)

Khashoggi, a contributor to the Washington Post residing in the United States, was murdered after a visit to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2 to obtain paperwork ahead of his wedding to his Turkish fiancee.   

The 59-year-old former Saudi insider was strangled before he was cut up into pieces by a team of 15 Saudis sent to Istanbul for the killing, according to Turkish officials.

There has been speculation that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman ordered the hit but Riyadh has absolved the de facto leader of any blame.

Khashoggi’s remains have still not been found despite searches of the consulate, the Saudi consul-general’s residence in Istanbul and two villas in northwestern Turkey.


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The Capital Gazette newspaper in Annapolis, Maryland, is recognized by Time, as they continue with their coverage after five colleague were gunned down on June 28

The five victims (from left to right) were writer John McNamara, special publications editor Wendi Winters, assistant editor Robert Hiaasen, editorial page editor Gerald Fischman, and sales assistant Rebecca Smith

Philippine journalist Ressa has been threatened with prison and closure of the news site she co-founded but she’s fighting back.

The site, Rappler, has taken a critical stand on President Rodrigo Duterte’s deadly anti-drug crackdown and now finds itself the target of grinding, unrelenting attacks from the authorities.

Ressa turned herself earlier this month to face one tax evasion charge, but could still face arrest on four other counts that she insists were crafted to bring the site to heel.

The charge carries up to 10 years behind bars. It stems from allegations that Rappler and Ressa did not pay taxes on 2015 bond sales that netted $3 million.

Rappler has been among a clutch of Philippine news outlets that have questioned the methods of the president’s signature crackdown, which police say has killed nearly 5,000 alleged dealers and addicts since 2016.

Rights campaigners say the true toll is triple that and could amount to crimes against humanity.

Philippine journalist Maria Ressa has been threatened with prison and closure of the news site she co-founded but she’s fighting back

Maria Ressa, CEO and executive editor of online news site Rappler, turned herself in earlier this month to face one tax evasion charge, which she contests

Top 10 TIME Person of the Year’s shortlist

  • Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle 
  • President Donald Trump
  • Russian President Vladimir Putin 
  • Special counsel Robert Mueller
  • Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi
  • March for Our Lives activists 
  • Dr. Christine Blasey Ford
  • Separated migrant families 
  • Director Ryan Coogler
  • South Korean President Moon Jae-in 

Yet, the site and its roughly 30 journalists, a majority of whom are women in their 20s, has kept publishing stories on the drug war.

Ressa insists the site is not anti-Duterte, saying it is just doing its job to hold the government to account.

In doing so it has invited a steady stream of online vitriol since Duterte came to power over two years ago.

And the Capital Gazette newspaper in Annapolis, Maryland, is recognized by Time, as staff continue with their coverage after five colleague were gunned down on June 28.

Jarrod Ramos is charged with five counts of first-degree murder after murdering five newspaper employees after shooting through the glass newsroom entrance. 

The victims were reporter John McNamara, special publications editor Wendi Winters, assistant editor Robert Hiaasen, editorial page editor Gerald Fischman, and sales assistant Rebecca Smith. 

Time has also recognized the two Reuters journalists Wa Lone, 32, and Kyaw Soe Oo, 28, who were jailed for their reporting on the Rohingya crisis. Their wives are pictured holding photos of their husbands


The two Reuters journalists Wa Lone, 32, (left) and Kyaw Soe Oo, 28, (right) were jailed for their reporting on the Rohingya crisis

Time has also recognized the two Reuters journalists Wa Lone, 32, and Kyaw Soe Oo, 28, who were jailed for their reporting on the Rohingya crisis. 

They were found guilty under a state secrets act in September after exposing the extrajudicial killing of 10 Rohingya men during a brutal military crackdown in Myanmar’s western Rakhine state last year.

The pair – who have been held behind bars for nearly a year since their arrest last December – were sentenced to seven years in jail, a verdict that drew widespread condemnation, including from US Vice President Mike Pence.

The shortlist for Time Person of the Year included President Donald Trump, who made the cover in 2016, as well as the man who has rocked his presidency – special counsel Robert Mueller. 

 

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