Metro Center: Over 300 violations committed against journalists in Kurdistan Region

Kurdistan 01:36 PM - 2022-01-16

Over 300 violations were committed against journalists in 2021, according to statistics from the Metro Center for Journalists Rights & Advocacy.

The statistics show that 353 violations have been committed against 260 journalists and media organizations in 2021.

On Sunday morning, at the Ramada Hotel Hall in Slemani, the Metro Center published a report on the freedom of journalism in the Kurdistan Region- Iraq for 2021. 

In a speech at the ceremony, the director of the Metro Centre referred to the content of this year's report and the past 10 years of journalists' situation in the Kurdistan Region. 

"We, as the local government of Slemani, will be shields and fences for journalists and we are ready to give all kinds of information to the media," the Slemani Governor Dr. Haval Abubaker said in a speech. 

The Kurdistan Region has faced harsh criticism for its treatment of journalists over the past year as it perused “numerous cases” against journalists in the last year.

Dozens of journalists and activists have been imprisoned in Erbil during last year for many different reasons including participating in anti-government protests, spying for foreign diplomatic missions, sending sensitive information to foreign entities, and cooperating with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).

The rulings met with great public and foreign condemnation, as well as serious doubts about the independence of the judiciary in the Kurdistan Region.

The US, Germany, UK, and Canada condemned the decision of the court regarding the imprisonment of journalists and activists in Duhok.  

The first group to be put on trial - Sherwan Sherwani, Shvan Saeed, Ayaz Karam, Hariwan Issa, and Guhdar Zebari - were found guilty of endangering national security and sentenced to six years in jail, while several others were released earlier this year on time served.


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