Event: Who’s afraid of journalists? The free expression mission to Italy

Event: Who’s afraid of journalists? The free expression mission to Italy - Media

On 11 May, as part of an open dialogue among journalists, the Media Freedom Rapid Response (MFRR) and the European Commission will launch a report elaborating on the key findings and recommendations stemming from the MFRR mission to Italy, which took place in Rome and Naples from 4 to 6 April.

The launch will coincide with an online event on Wednesday 11 May, at 10 AM CET, organised by the delegation of the MFRR who visited Italy in April to meet with the Constitutional Court, members of parliament, the police, and several journalists, freelancers, and reporters.

Discussion will focus in particular on defamation laws and safety of journalists in Italy.


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The fact-finding mission was carried out to assess the legislative delays preventing Parliament from responding to the repeated calls from the Constitutional Court to reform defamation laws, and to get acquainted with the coordinated State monitoring and protection system implemented in Italy to address acts of intimidation against journalists. The latter good practice was mentioned in a recent Recommendation of the European Commission.

The European Commission will be represented in the meeting by Anna-Kaisa Itkonen, Policy Officer, overseeing Rule of Law and Media Freedom at the Secretariat General of the European Commission.

The MFRR delegates will present the findings and the conclusions of the report, which will be available online on Wednesday, 11 May.

The Italian stakeholders that helped to organise the mission – the FNSI (Italian Federation of Journalists), the association Articolo 21 and the Order of Journalists – will be represented by Raffaele Lorusso, Elisa Marincola and Carlo Bartoli. Claudio Silvestri of the regional journalists’ union of Campania will present a picture of the difficulties unions face in a territory where organised crime is so powerful.

Italian journalists have confirmed their presence: Mimmo Rubio, Graziella Di Mambro, Valerio Cataldi, Antonella Napoli and a delegate of the editor of the newspaper Avvenire.

Simultaneous translation between English and Italian will be available.

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This event was coordinated by Media Freedom Rapid Response (MFRR), a Europe-wide mechanism that tracks, monitors and responds to violations of press and media freedom in EU Member States and Candidate Countries.