The High Level Panel of Legal Experts on Media Freedom marks World Press Freedom Day 2022

Wednesday 4 May 2022

Top row L-R: Lord David Neuberger, Can Yeginsu, Catherine Amirfar, Amal Clooney, Baroness Helena Kennedy QC, Hina Jilani, Dario Milo
Middle row L-R: Baroness Françoise Tulkens, Catherine Anite
​​​​​​​Bottom row L-R: The Honourable Irwin Cotler, PC, OC, OQ, Karuna Nundy, Nadim Houry, Justice Manuel José Cepeda Espinosa, Judge Chile Eboe-Osuji, Marietje Schaake, Professor Seong-Phil Hong


On World Press Freedom Day, 3 May 2022, the High Level Panel of Legal Experts on Media Freedom participated in a number of activities to highlight the grave challenges facing the press globally and to showcase its recommendations to the Media Freedom Coalition. The High Level Panel stands in solidarity with the independent press, including the journalists risking their lives to bring facts and the truth to the public forum.

WATCH: The High Level Panel on World Press Freedom Day 2022. This is a short film released by the High Level Panel on the occasion of World Press Freedom Day. Watch the film here.

READ: ‘The Beginning of the End for Criminal Defamation in the Americas? The El Universo Case’, a thought piece authored by High Level Panel members Justice Manuel José Cepeda Espinosa and Dario Milo, published in Just Security on World Press Freedom Day. The article analyses the decision of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in the El Universo case. This is a recent landmark judgment from the Inter-American Court regarding criminal defamation. The High Level Panel was invited by the Court to intervene in the case and was represented before it by Mr Milo and Can Yeginsu, barrister and Deputy Chair of the High Level Panel. Read the article in English, and in Spanish.

At the UNESCO World Press Freedom Day Conference in Punta del Este, Uruguay, on 3 May, the High Level Panel hosted ‘SILENCED – Democracy, Journalism and Censorship in the Digital Age: An Interactive Dialogue with the High Level Panel of Legal Experts on Media Freedom’. The event was moderated by Pedro Vaca Villarreal, the Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. Member of the High Level Panel, and former President of the International Criminal Court, Judge Chile Eboe-Osuji delivered the opening remarks. Deputy Chair of the High Level Panel Catherine Amirfar and High Level Panel members Mr Milo and Marietje Schaake also spoke at the session alongside Rodica Ciochina, Director of the Media and Internet Governance Unit at the Council of Europe.

Other participation by High Level Panel members at the Conference included:

The recordings of these sessions will be available to view online once the conference has concluded on 5 May.


Notes to the Editor

  1. The High Level Panel of Legal Experts on Media Freedom is the independent advisory body of the Media Freedom Coalition. The High Level Panel’s remit is to provide legal advice and recommendations to the Coalition and its partners, including international organisations, for the purposes of promoting and protecting a vibrant, free, and independent media. The High Level Panel’s Secretariat is the International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute (IBAHRI), providing it with operational, technical, and legal assistance. The work of the High Level Panel is supported by the Global Media Defence Fund, administered by UNESCO. The Chair of the High Level Panel is Lord Neuberger of Abbotsbury and its Deputy Chairs are Can Yeginsu and Catherine Amirfar.
  2. Related material:
    1. High Level Panel of Legal Experts on Media Freedom - Opinions to States on Legislation
    2. High Level Panel of Legal Experts on Media Freedom - Amicus Curiae
    3. High Level Panel of Legal Experts on Media Freedom call for media freedom during Third Global Conference
  3. The International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute (IBAHRI), established in 1995 under Founding Honorary President Nelson Mandela, is an autonomous and financially independent entity, working to promote, protect and enforce human rights under a just rule of law, and to preserve the independence of the judiciary and the legal profession worldwide.
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    The IBA acts as a connector, enabler, and influencer, for the administration of justice, fair practice, and accountability worldwide. The IBA has collaborated on a broad range of ground-breaking, international projects with the United Nations, the European Parliament, the Council of Europe, The Commonwealth, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the World Trade Organization, the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, among others.
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Website page link for this news release:
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