Of the Hetq newspaper of the Investigative Journalists' NGO of Armenia
(adopted on December 6, 2002)
The mission of the Investigative Journalists' NGO is to get to the truth and to inform the public.
Freedom of speech is a supreme value and it must be protected at any cost.
Freedom of speech also implies responsibility, which requires us to be fair, impartial and honest.
We, the journalists of the Hetq newspaper of the Investigative Journalists, adopt these regulations and commit ourselves to always respecting the following principles:
- To publish only reliable and accurate information
- To differentiate information from commentary
- To clearly distinguish in publications between facts and commentaries
- Not to distort the facts. To correct mistakes as soon as possible
- Not to obtain information by illegal or dishonest means
- Before accusing somebody of illegal activity or negligence, to listen to his or her opinion and to ensure the right to reply
- To respect the principle of the presumption of innocence
- To name the source of information whenever possible. Taking into consideration that investigative journalism cannot exist without confidential sources, not to reveal the information source if it has previously been agreed upon
- To respect copyright
- Not to write to order
- Not to accept gifts, to decline free travel or other services that can cast doubt on our independence and impartiality and jeopardize public confidence in the Hetq newspaper. If it is impossible to reject a gift, it should then be sent to a children's home, old people's home or another similar institution
- To respect the inviolability of the personal life of an individual, and an individual's rights, honor and dignity
- Not to commit plagiarism
- Not to be affected by political and financial influences and pressures
- Not to be a member of a political party, not to get involved in politics, not to hold public office
- To avoid having a second job if it calls the journalist's independence and impartiality in question
- To avoid having close personal relations with public officials. Our personal and professional conduct should not cast doubt on confidence in our newspaper and our profession
Every journalist of the Hetq newspaper must follow the above-mentioned principles in his or her professional activity.