The event holds at Helsinki, Finland, and significantly coincides with the 250th anniversary of the world’s first freedom of information law.
The annual celebration produces an avenue to celebrate the fundamental principles of press freedom; assess the state of press freedom all over the world; shiled the media from attacks on their independence; and pay tribute to journalists who have lost their lives in the line of duty.
For this year's celebrations which runs from 2 - 4 May, in Helsinki, Finland, here are few things you need to know:
1. This year's celebration coincides with three important milestones:
- the 250th anniversary of the world’s first freedom of information law, covering both modern-day Sweden and Finland
- the 25th anniversary of the adoption of the Windhoek Declaration of press freedom principles
- the year 2016 is also the first year of the 15 year life-cycle of the new Sustainable Development Goals
2. The event focuses on three different aspects of press freedom:
- freedom of information as a fundamental freedom and as a human right
- protecting press freedom from censorship and surveillance overreach
- ensuring safety for journalism online and offline
3. UNESCO marks World Press Freedom Day by conferring the UNESCO/Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize on a deserving individual, organization or institution that has made an outstanding contribution to the defence and/or promotion of press freedom anywhere in the world, especially when this has been achieved in the face of danger.
4. The Prize is named in honour of Guillermo Cano Isaza, a journalist of Colombian nationality who was murdered in front of the news house where he works, El Espectador, in Bogotá, on 17 December 1986.
5. The annual award ceremony will take place later today. This year's winner is Khadija Ismayilova, an investigative journalist from Azerbaijan.