Invitation to the Press Conference on the occasion of the award ceremony of the "Prize for the Freedom and Future of the Media" 2013

Leipzig, 1 October 2013

Dear sirs,

For the 13th time, the Media Foundation of Sparkasse Leipzig awards its "Prize for the Freedom and Future of the Media" on 8 October 2013 to journalists, who have particularly fought for the freedom of press.

The Media Foundation cordially invites you to join our press conference on 8 October, 11:00 a.m. at the "Media Campus Villa Ida", Poetenweg 28 in Leipzig as well as the award ceremony at 7:00 p.m. at the same place.

This year, the prize is awarded to the investigative journalist Tongam Rina from India, the German Middle East correspondents Jörg Armbruster and Martin Durm and to Brigitte Alfter (Denmark) and Ides Debruyne (Belgium) as initiators of a European investigative journalism.

In addition, the "Prize for the Freedom and Future of the Media" 2013 is awarded to the British daily The Guardian and to blogger and journalist Glenn Greenwald (USA). All laureates have been committed to freedom of expression and freedom of the press with great courage and willingness to take risks.

Information on the laureates:
Brigitte Alfter from Denmark and Belgian ldes Debruyne recognised the need for thorough research on European issues, without being impeded by national borders. Their organisation, which was founded in 2008, promotes European, collaborative research journalism through scholarships and supports the "European Data Harvest Conference" for data and research journalism.

Jörg Armbruster, correspondent of ARD television, and Martin Durm, radio reporter of SWR radio, have taken the risk to report independently and authentic from the suffering of the people in the civil war-torn country of Syria, which is supposedly one of the most dangerous countries for journalists beside Somalia. Armbruster was seriously injured.

In Indian public, among international observers and local colleagues, Tongam Rina has an excellent reputation, which is based on her journalistic work and her personal integrity. Although the freedom of press in India is guaranteed by the constitution, the example of Tongam Rina shows the acute endangering of critical journalists in the country.

The Guardian and Glenn Greenwald informed the international public in an excellent and journalistically independent manner about the dimension of global surveillance of digital communication networks. Against opposition and despite direct interventions, they continued this work unperturbed. Because of his research and publications, Glenn Greenwald is also suspended to unacceptable personal limitations, threats and hazards.

Press conference:
• the laureates Tongam Rina, Jörg Armbruster, Martin Durm, Brigitte Alfter and Ides Debruyne
• Dr. Harald Langenfeld, CEO of the Media Foundation and Sparkasse Leipzig,
• Stephan Seeger, Managing Director of the Media Foundation and Director Foundations of Sparkasse Leipzig.

Hans-Ulrich Jörges, co-editor of STERN magazine and Editor for Special Affairs of Gruner+Jahr, will hold this year's "Leipzig Speech to the Freedom of Media and Press" during the award ceremony.

The "Prize for the Freedom and Future of the Media" is an independent and internationally recognized award for journalists, publishers and institutions who work for the freedom of the press. The prize is also intended to keep the memory of the "Peaceful Revolution" in Leipzig on 9 October 1989. At that time, demonstraters demanded "a free press for a free country".