Sixty journalists were killed in the first half of 2015, according to a report by the UK-based organisation International News Safety Institute (INSI). Killing The Messenger looks at the number of reporters killed for simply doing their job. It also details how they died and where they worked. Since its publication, that figure has risen to 65, according to the INSI website.

For the first time, a peaceful Western democracy tops the list as the deadliest country in the world to be a journalist. Eight reporters were killed in the attack on the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in France at the start of the year.

killing the messenger
The coffin of Charlie Hebdo cartoonist Bernard "Tignous" Verlhac is carried out of the town hall of Montreuil, near Paris, during his funeral on January 15, 2015. Gunmen opened fire in the Paris offices of Charlie Hebdo on January, killing 12 people including (from left) deputy chief editor Bernard Maris and cartoonists Georges Wolinski, Jean Cabut, aka Cabu, Charb, Tignous, Honore (Philippe Honore) and Michel Renaud AFP

INSI president Richard Sambrook said 2015 is shaping up to be worse than the previous year for journalists' deaths. "Local journalists are under most threat – from investigating crime and corruption – and account for more than 90% of those killed," he said.

The report reveals South Sudan and Yemen were the second bloodiest countries for journalists in the first half of 2015, with six members of the news media killed in each place, while Iraq and Libya are close behind, with five journalists losing their lives in each country.

killing the messenger
Killing the Messenger/INSI

Syria, which has topped the list for the past three years, saw a decline in the number of reporters killed – down from 11 in 2014 to two during the first six months of 2015. The country has become a no-go zone for most journalists since the high-profile beheadings of Japanese and American freelancers, which is thought to be the main reason for the decline.

"So far this year seven journalists have been decapitated by jihadist groups – a figure unthinkable a few years ago. The consequence of all this is that the public know less about the world than they should, and the killing of journalists is increasingly seen as a political act or means of censorship," said Sambrook.

killing the messenger
Journalists beheaded by Islamic State include (from left) Freelance American journalist James Foley in August 2014, Japanese freelance video journalist Kenji Goto in January 2015, and American-Israeli journalist Steven Sotloff in September 2014 Reuters

The report found that more than half of the journalists killed died during peacetime and their murderers enjoyed near total impunity. INSI identified only five cases in which suspects were identified or arrested.

IBTimesUK pays tribute to photographers and reporters killed, injured or harassed doing their jobs in hostile environments.

killing the messenger
Palestinians carry one of two journalists who were killed by Israeli shelling near a market in Shejaya, Gaza City on July 30, 2014 Ashraf Amra/Reuters