The New Media Draft Law in Syria – 2024

The new media draft law, which is awaiting approval in the People’s Assembly, has sparked widespread criticism from journalists and workers in the Syrian media field, because if it is approved, it will eliminate any space, no matter how narrow, for independent media work, and it constitutes a retreat even from Law 108 of 2011, which did not provide any protections for journalists. The draft did not establish minimum media freedoms or an enabling environment for media work. Since its approval, the Syrian Center for Media and Freedom of Expression has documented 1042 violations against journalists and media institutions by the military and security agencies affiliated with the Syrian government in Damascus. There are 795 violations between 2011 and 2020 and 247 violations between 2021 and March 2024.

The new draft law, which is supposed to include the basic regulations governing media work in Syria, includes 87 articles, 59 of which explain how to license and accredit various media outlets. According to its authors, the reasons for issuing it: 

to cover developments in the field of media and communication, especially in procedural matters not covered by the applicable law, related to social media, and the accreditation of media offices for non-Syrian media outlets, media research centers, opinion polling, and training centers to be integrated and appropriate to the work environment of new media in its various aspects and to strengthen the Ministry of Information’s supervisory role over media outlets and the extent of their commitment to the provisions of the law.

To read the full study on the new media draft law, download the file below: