Sitting uncomfortably in her chair because of a soccer injury, the Jordanian radio host Diala Dabbas said, "I know we are banned from talking about the king, his family, and the divine, but now I am also afraid to talk about anyone else who could be considered a 'religious symbol'."
The Committee to Protect Journalists and Reporters Without Borders today sent a letter to Sultan Qaboos bin Said of Oman, to draw his attention to the prosecution of three journalists from the independent daily newspaper, Azamn.
In the small, polished Moroccan capital of Rabat, pictures of King Mohamed VI, who took the throne in 1999, hang in many shops, offices, and hotels. In most of these, he is clean-shaven, smiling, and wearing a suit: a modern monarch. His image is part of the official narrative of the country as a place of moderation and progress.
Today the Committee to Protect Journalists joined 42 other organizations in a joint statement expressing concern at the Bahraini Public Prosecutor's decision to charge Nazeeha Saeed, an award-winning journalist with Radio Monte Carlo Douliya and France24, with unlawfully working for international media.
When Mosul fell to Islamic State on June, 10, 2014, it sparked one of the biggest attacks on press freedom in recent times. Newspapers were shuttered, TV channels were ransacked, radio stations disappeared from the airwaves, and dozens of journalists vanished. Within days, the militants had a monopoly on information output.
The mobile messaging app Telegram is popular in Iran, where citizens who have limited access to uncensored news and mainstream social media sites, such as Facebook and Twitter, use it to share and access information. But the app's estimated 20 million users in Iran, including those who use Telegram to report and communicate with sources, could be putting themselves at severe risk of data compromise, security experts warn.
Last week, the proposed Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act emerged from the U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee with approval. The bill was passed by the Senate last year. If passed by the full House of Representatives and signed into law by the president, it has the potential to offer partial redress to one of the most chilling truths facing journalists today: in 90 percent of cases, the murders of journalists go unpunished.
A standoff this week between Egyptian authorities and the country's influential Journalists Syndicate could mark a turning point in the fight for media control that has raged since before President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi took office.
The Committee to Protect Journalists has joined Social Justice Connection and other press freedom and human rights groups in calling on the World Bank to adopt a human rights policy at its annual spring meeting in Washington D.C. In a letter to the president of World Bank, Jim Yong Kim, the groups urged the bank to consider human rights and freedom of expression in the drafting of its social protection policy, which is due to be completed this summer.
Do you believe the free flow of information must be protected? Sign the #RightToReport petition and demand that President Obama immediately:
1. Issue a presidential policy directive prohibiting the hacking and surveillance of journalists and media organizations.
2. Limit aggressive prosecutions that ensnare journalists and intimidate whistleblowers.
3. Prevent the harassment of journalists at the U.S. border.
Or click here to see the full petition, and join leading journalists like Christiane Amanpour, The Guardian’s Alan Rusbridger, Editor of the AP Kathleen Carroll, and Arianna Huffington in signing on.