Reporters Without Borders announced on Tuesday that at least 65 media workers around the world have been killed doing their jobs this year.
The Paris-based group said that the toll makes 2017 the least bloody for professional reporters in 14 years.
Among the dead were 50 professional journalists, seven citizen journalists and eight other media workers. The five most dangerous countries were Syria, Mexico, Afghanistan, Iraq and the Philippines, said the media freedom organization.
Of those killed, 35 died in regions where armed conflict is ongoing while 30 were killed outside of such areas.
Thirty-nine of those killed were targeted for their journalistic work such as reporting on political corruption or organized crime while the other 26 were killed while working due to shelling and bomb attacks, for example.
Mexico was the most dangerous place for reporters for a country not witnessing conflict. This was blamed on drug wars and reporters covering issues of corruption among the political class.
“It’s alarming that so many journalists were murdered outside of war zones,” said Katja Gloger, a board member of Reporters Without Borders.
“In far too many countries perpetrators can assume they’ll get off scot-free if they’re violent towards media professionals,” she added.
The organization said more than 300 media workers were currently in prison, with around half of those in five countries, namely Turkey, China, Syria, Iran and Vietnam.
The 2017 toll marks an 18 percent drop from 2016 that saw 79 reporters die.
This can be attributed to a growing awareness on the need to protect reporters better, said Reporters Without Borders.