HRW Middle East researcher discusses media freedom in Qatar, highlighting problems with the draft media law and other issues
Human Rights Watch recently launched their 2013 World Report in Doha, where experts discussed issues related to media freedom in Qatar.
Doha Centre for Media Freedom spoke to Middle East researcher, Nicholas McGeehan about the media freedom landscape in Qatar.
“…the existence of the Doha Centre for Media Freedom is evidence of the commitment on one level to media freedom…the question now is are they willing to take the next step and ensure that journalists’ rights to free expression, and citizens’ rights to free expression, [are] fully recognised.”
While McGeehan noted that coverage of issues related to migrant workers has improved, he expressed concerns about the draft media law and a “double standard on freedom of expression.” HRW also highlighted the disappointing coverage of the imprisonment of the Qatari poet, Mohamed Ibn Al-Dheeb Al-Ajami.
“The media landscape can be free when journalists feel free to express their views to policy makers on the issues of freedom of expression and journalistic freedom.”