IBA Annual Conference Miami 2022

30 Oct - 4 Nov 2022

Rooms 234, Level 2

Session information

The safety of journalists and the problem of arbitrary detention: a conversation hosted by the High Level Panel of Legal Experts on Media Freedom

Wednesday 2 November (1430 - 1545)

Rooms 234, Level 2
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IBA's Human Rights Institute (Lead)


In 2020, the independent advisory body to the Media Freedom Coalition, the High Level Panel of Legal Experts on Media Freedom, published an advisory report ‘A Pressing Concern: Protecting and Promoting Press Freedom by Strengthening Consular Support to Journalists at Risk’ examining the existing State approaches respecting consular assistance for journalists at risk abroad, and proposes a new paradigm of justice and accountability.

Every day, journalists and media personnel around the world fall victim to arbitrary detention, violence or intimidation on account of their work. These attacks resonate beyond their individual cases, being not only attacks on free expression, but also exponential assaults that silence the subjects of the reporting and deprive the public of their stories. By threatening and targeting journalists, States seek to send a dissuasive message, suppressing those who would report on their wrongdoings. According to Reporters Without Borders, as of 2022, over 500 journalists are arbitrarily detained worldwide. This is the highest number of journalists detained in connection with their work that they have ever recorded.

This event, organised by the International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute who act as Secretariat to the High Level Panel, will feature members of the High Level Panel and guest speakers in conversation on the role of international law in finding concerted approaches to address this mounting issue.

Session / Workshop Chair(s)

Catherine Amirfar Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, New York, New York, USA
Can Yeginsu 3 Verulam Buildings, London, England


Michael Breen Human Rights First, Washington, District of Columbia, USA
Dana Green The New York Times Company, New York, New York, USA; Chair, Media Law Committee
Professor Seong-Phil Hong High Level Panel of Legal Experts on Media Freedom, Seoul, South Korea