Hiwa Osman: It is important to protect freedom of speech, media in any new constitution

The media and political analyst, Hiwa Othman said that there are basic points that must be protected through clear texts in the constitution in order to safeguard freedom of media, the right to information for all citizens, and to confront hate speech.

Osman’s speech came during his participation in the first dialogue session held by Ezdina Organization within the project "A Constitution That Protects Us", at Ezdina's office in the city of Qamishlo/Qamishli, in the presence of journalists and representatives of media institutions.

Osman added that Iraq has gone through a similar experience to the Syrian issue regarding to creating the constitution, and before that the writing of a document related to the law of state administration in Iraq, which became the basis for drafting the Iraqi constitution.

Osman pointed out that the issue of the Iraqi constitution did not take the required space as it had been left to the Lawyers Committee in order to write it and write the state administration law, pointing out that Iraqi politicians at that time had no awareness on drafting and writing the constitution on basic topics such as freedom of expression and the right to obtain the information.

Osman noted that the issue of the problems that may occur as a result of these legislation in the future was not taken into consideration, pointing out that many issues that are deeply agreed between politicians, were agreed upon a general sentence, in order to relay the problem and postpone the problem to the future.

Osman pointed out that the mechanism for writing the constitution in Iraq differs from its writing in Syria, as discussions about the constitution are largely theoretical in Syria because they depend heavily on the political situation and the extent of the change that may occur.

Osman continued that the course of the constitution in Syria is linked to a large extent with political disagreements and agreements, pointing out that there are five basic issues that must be clearly present in the first texts of the constitution, which are “freedom of expression, the right to information, confronting hate speech, not differentiating between a journalist and others who are not journalists and the right to demonstrate and express opinion.

Osman added that these five issues may not interest the politicians who are sitting at the negotiating table, pointing out that the existence of an agreement between media professionals about these concepts will help them form a common perception and vision about freedom of expression and media freedom in Syria.

Osman said that politicians will be involved in issues of quotas during writing and drafting the constitution, and therefore these provisions will pass easily and smoothly into the constitution if there is a common vision among media professionals, regardless of their political orientations of these journalists.

Osman added that the provisions relating to the protection of journalists and the right to obtain information may not be of importance in the first period of implementing the constitution, but after a while, when entering into the details of the issues of protecting the press, freedom of expression and the right to information, there must be solid constitutional provisions that are not subject to wide interpretations in order to establish good situation for the press in a future Syria.

Osman pointed to the importance of preserving freedom of expression for all without discrimination in the Syrian constitution through clear points and clauses, and for freedom of expression to be guaranteed for all Syrians, regardless of whether he is a journalist or not, in light of the technical development and the emergence of social media that allows everyone to be a sender and receiver of information. .

Osman added that freedom of speech is a human right and it should be a right guaranteed to all Syrians, regardless of whether or not he is a journalist.

Osman indicated that freedom of speech may not be sufficient to guarantee freedom of the media and journalistic work, adding that the equivalent thing to freedom of expression in any constitution is the right to obtain information that guarantees everyone the right of expression for all automatically.

Osman stressed the importance of confronting hate speech in the media and the press, and setting determinants of freedom of expression, in order to limit this phenomenon by spreading the culture of confronting hate speech through the media, pointing out that issuing an article in the constitution related to combating hate speech is a complicated process.

It is noteworthy that Ezdina Organization launched a new project, in northeastern Syria, under the title "A Constitution That Protects Us", started on February 23, 2021, for a period of three months.



Activities,5,Dialogue Sessions,18,Hasaka,15,Media,21,Multimedia,16,Op-eds,3,Outputs,19,Pictures library,4,Qamishli,63,Reports,13,Statements,37,video library,11,
A Constitution That Protects Us - Ezdina Organization: Hiwa Osman: It is important to protect freedom of speech, media in any new constitution
Hiwa Osman: It is important to protect freedom of speech, media in any new constitution
A Constitution That Protects Us - Ezdina Organization
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