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Teachers’ Syndicate Board Released; Others Still Held

(Amman) – Jordanian authorities have exploited the country’s Covid-19 pandemic to forcibly disperse public protests against the arbitrary closure of the country’s Teachers Syndicate and mass arrests of its leadership, Human Rights Watch said today…
 Jordanian police block a road in front of protestors in Irbid, north of Jordan on August 1, 2020.
News

Latest Escalation in Media Restrictions

(Amman) – Jordanian authorities have used a sweeping gag order, harassment, and arrests to limit media coverage of ongoing protests stemming from the arbitrary closure of the Jordanian Teachers’ Syndicate on July 25, 2020, Human Rights Watch said…
Thousands of Jordanian teachers march from the governorship building to the Professional Unions Complex to demand a reversal of the decision to close the Teachers Union, in Irbid, Jordan on August 01, 2020.
News

Government Should Support Independent Media Ahead of Electoral Process

On July 7, Abdiaziz Ahmed Gurbiye, the chief editor and deputy director of the independent Goobjoog Media Group, is expected to appear in court in Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu. But his case should have never gone this far. On April 14, Abdiaziz…
Somali journalists in Mogadishu, Somalia December 29, 2019. 
News

New Penalties for ‘Causing Panic’ About Pandemic

(Amman) – Jordanian authorities have arrested media workers and others and issued a vaguely worded emergency decree that could chill online discussion about Jordan’s Covid-19 response, Human Rights Watch said today. Under the…
Jordanian police personnel guard at a checkpoint during the second day of a nationwide curfew, amid concerns over the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Amman, Jordan. © 2020 Reuters
News

Respond to Youth Demands, Gain Respect in the World

(Beirut) – Middle East and North Africa (MENA) governments can respond to the popular demands of the region’s youth for reform by implementing five changes in 2018 to arbitrary, outdated legal systems that infringe upon citizens’ rights and liberties,…
Demonstration outside Parliament on December 6, 2016, with women in white dresses and wrapped in bandages, calling for the repeal of article 522 of the penal code.
News

Key Provisions that Severely Restrict Speech Remain

When Somalia’s new minister of information took office in March, he promised to review the country’s restrictive media law, raising hopes of fostering a better environment for journalists and free expression in the country. …
Journalists queue for a security sweep outside the venue of the presidential vote at the airport in Somalia's capital Mogadishu
News

Country’s New Leadership Should Ensure Credible Investigation

On Sunday morning, Abdihamid Mohamed Osman, a technician and editor at Universal TV network, was driving to work in Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu, when a bomb planted in his car exploded. Abdihamid was taken to the hospital, where he is receiving treatment…
The blood stained camera of a photojournalist is seen after a secondary explosion in front of Dayah hotel in Somalia's capital Mogadishu, January 25, 2017.
News

Annual Day Promotes Accountability for Attacks on the Media

For reporters at risk around the world – because they’re exposing corruption, covering conflict, or afflicting the comfortable – today matters: it’s the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes Against Journalists. You’d think a group of professional…
Somali photojournalist runs for cover while reporting on fighting between the Somali government and African Union forces against the Islamist armed group Al-Shabab in the Lower Shabelle region of Somalia, April 2012.
News

Journalists Live in Fear While Government Promises to Investigate Ring Hollow

Tuesday was yet another bittersweet day for journalists in Somalia. The National Intelligence and Security Agency (NISA) released Abdi Adan Guled, the editor of  Xog-Ogaal, one of the country’s oldest newspapers. Abdi had been detained for three days…
People read newspapers in Somalia.
Report
Summary The authorities, the public, and the militants are all hostile to us. We are like fish in poisonous waters, we can be attacked or killed at any time. Journalist working in Galkayo, February 2015 …
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Both the Somali government and the Islamist armed group Al-Shabab are using abusive tactics to sway media coverage. The Somali federal government and regional authorities have used various abusive tactics to affect media coverage, including arrests and…
News

Vague Law Being Used to Curb Media Freedom

(Amman) – Jordanian authorities are curtailing media freedom by detaining and bringing charges against journalists under broad and vague provisions of the country’s terrorism law. In the most recent case, on July 8, 2015, authorities detained Ghazi…
News

Arrests, Security Trials for Peaceful Criticism

(Amman) – Jordanian lawmakers should undertake critical reforms in 2014 to remove or amend laws that place impermissible limits on free expression, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2014. Jordanian officials prosecuted people during 2013…
News

Convictions of Lawmaker, Union Members Undermine Free Speech

(Washington, D.C.) – Ecuador’s President Rafael Correa should end the use of criminal defamation laws to target his critics, Human Rights Watch said today. The prosecution and convictions of the opposition legislator José Cléver Jiménez Cabrera and two…
News

HRC 24th Session: Statement Delivered Under Item 10

The human rights situation in Somalia, particularly in the south-central part of the country, remains dire. The Islamist armed group al-Shabaab continues to commit serious abuses including targeted killings, executions and punishments amounting to torture…
News

Communications Law Opens the Door to Censorship, Prosecuting Journalists

(Washington, DC) – The Communications Law that the Ecuadorian National Assembly approved on June 14, 2013, seriously undermines free speech. The law includes overly broad language that will limit the free expression of journalists and media outlets. The…
News

Regulation of Online Expression Undermines Reform Pledges

(Beirut) – Jordanian authorities should immediately rescind an order to censor 263 unlicensed local news websites. The government should also scrap recent legislation that allows it to encroach on online media freedom. The attempts to regulate online…
News

Court Twice Ruled in 2 Intellectuals’ Favor

(Beirut) – Jordanian criminal justice authorities should immediately drop their three-year prosecution of two intellectuals and withdraw all charges against them. The charges, which include “disturbing relations with a foreign state” and “inciting racist…
News

Ruling is Serious Defeat for Media Freedom

Update: (New York, May 18, 2013) – On March 17 2013, the Supreme Court of Somalia overturned the conviction of journalist Abdiaziz Abdinur Ibrahim and ordered his immediate release. Abdiaziz had been detained for 66 days prior to the Supreme Court…
News

Government Threatens Further Media Intimidation

(Nairobi) – Somali authorities should immediately charge or release Daud Abdi Daud, a journalist who has been in custody since February 5, 2013, Human Rights Watch said today. On February 11, he was transferred from police custody to Mogadishu Central…