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The impact of Counter‑Terrorism and other Criminal Legislation on Media Freedom and the Safety of Journalists


01 November 2023




This study examines the impact that some counter-terrorism and criminal laws mainly aiming to safeguard national security and public order or to respect the reputation of others, have on media freedom and the safety of journalists. It describes practices in several States and regions, and presents findings and recommendations made by UN human rights mechanisms on their compliance with the right to freedom of expression and related rights. The study identifies challenges in the application of counterterrorism and criminal laws that result in a serious adverse effect on media freedom and the safety of journalists in many States. The study presents a set of recommendations to States regarding the adoption and implementation of counter-terrorism and other criminal laws in a manner that does not result in undue restrictions on the right to freedom of expression and< media freedom.

Issued By:

Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights