Free Expression Digest: Wed., August 10
PEN’s Free Expression Digest brings you a daily curated round-up of the most important free expression-related stories from around the web. Subscribe here. Please send your feedback and suggestions to email@example.com
Dozens shot dead in anti-government protests across Ethiopia
Dozens of people were shot dead by security forces in protests across Ethiopia’s Oromiya and Amhara regions over the weekend. The deaths were in at least 10 towns across Oromiya, including Ambo, Dembi Dolo, and Nekemt – areas that saw previous rounds of protest.
Maldives lawmakers criminalize defamation, with steep fines
The Maldives’ parliament on Tuesday passed a law that criminalizes defamation and allows for jail terms and steep fines for media outlets, journalists, and social media users, despite concern it will curb free speech in the country that has lost many democratic freedoms in recent years. ABC NEWS
Algerian court upholds 2-year term against journalist
An Algerian appeals court has upheld a two-year prison sentence against London-based journalist Mohamed Tamalt for insulting President Abdelaziz Bouteflika on his Facebook page. THE WASHINGTON POST
After posting video of CCP tailing, Hong Kong localist gets Facebook ban
Edward Leung, member of a localist party, was banned from posting on Facebook for 24 hours after his video of two men following him was reported. The men claimed to be sent by “grandpa,” slang for the Chinese Communist Party. Leung was barred from running in the upcoming Legislative Council election for his pro-independence stance.
HONG KONG FREE PRESS
Russia allows rare protest against new antiterrorism laws
In a mass public protest with a rare permit, hundreds of critics of the Russian government gathered in Moscow to demonstrate against a new set of antiterrorism laws, which introduced measures including requirements to store all communications data for six months, and phone and texting records for one to three years. THE NEW YORK TIMES
Press freedom groups call on Bangladesh minister to free journalist
Twenty-six press freedom groups from around the world have called on Bangladesh’s justice minister to free Shafik Rehman, a 81-year-old British-Bangladeshi journalist, from prison in Dhaka, registering their “serious concerns” about his treatment. THE GUARDIAN