Saudi Arabia / Middle East & North Africa

  

In Middle East and North Africa, a drop in attacks on journalists belies dire state of press freedom

The Middle East and North Africa region has long been especially dangerous for journalists. The Committee to Protect Journalists’ research has found that one out of every three reporters killed worldwide in retaliation for their work since 1992 — 477 out of 1,422, or 33.5% – were located in the region. That proportion rose to…

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Investigative reporter Bradley Hope: Pegasus spyware revelations a ‘wake-up call for journalists’

Bradley Hope was in Abu Dhabi in 2009, the year the BlackBerry devices overheated. “If you put it next to your face it would almost burn,” he told CPJ in a phone interview. The BBC that year reported that a UAE telecom company had prompted local BlackBerry owners to install a rogue surveillance update disguised…

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CPJ joins letter urging NSO to act on commitments to curb spyware abuse

The Committee to Protect Journalists and eight other civil society groups today co-signed an open letter asking the Israel-based NSO Group company to deliver on its commitments to improve transparency about sales of its advanced spyware, and due diligence to protect human rights. Research by CPJ and other organizations indicates that the company’s Pegasus product…

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Journalist Reem Abdellatif on the risks facing female reporters who cover the Gulf

The trolling started after Reem Abdellatif, a prominent Egyptian-American journalist now based in The Netherlands, published her first column in December for the Israeli daily newspaper Haaretz. Titled “How I escaped Saudi Arabia, the Kingdom that terrorizes women,” it described the challenges she faced as a female journalist who had previously worked in Saudi Arabia and denounced Saudi…

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Three takeaways from the US intelligence report blaming Saudi Arabia’s Mohammed bin Salman for Khashoggi’s murder

On Friday, the United States laid the blame for the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi squarely at the feet of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in a long-awaited report from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence. The release of the report, which is just three pages long, signaled a change from the previous…

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Portrait of Ghada Oueiss facing camera with arms folded in a newsroom

Al-Jazeera’s Ghada Oueiss on hacking, harassment, and Jamal Khashoggi

In a mid-2020 Washington Post opinion piece, Lebanese Al-Jazeera broadcast journalist Ghada Oueiss described hackers stealing private photos and videos from her phone and posting them online. The leak resulted in a sharp escalation of online attacks, Oueiss told CPJ in a January 2021 call. Since the brutal murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi…

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Ten years after the Arab Spring, the region’s media faces grave threats. Here are the top press freedom trends

In early February 2011, Alaa Abdelfattah was in Egypt’s Tahrir Square, documenting and participating in the nascent pro-democracy uprising that would topple the government and transform the country and the region. Today, he is in prison on anti-state and false news charges, which his family believes are partly retaliatory for his work. Abdelfattah is one of…

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Amicus briefs support CPJ’s appeal in Khashoggi lawsuit

Nearly three dozen media and press freedom organizations, as well as 10 major human rights organizations and experts, have signed on to amicus briefs in support of CPJ’s appeal in its lawsuit seeking documents on whether U.S. intelligence agencies knew of threats to Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi before his murder by the Saudi government….

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Khashoggi portrait

US intelligence community should explain document denial in Khashoggi case, CPJ lawsuit argues

The U.S. intelligence community should confirm or deny the existence of documents that may provide information on its awareness of threats to the life of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi, the Committee to Protect Journalists argued in a brief submitted yesterday to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. Khashoggi, a Saudi…

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A poster of Saudi Arabia's King and Crown Prince, in Jeddah in November 2017. Medical assessments leaked to The Guardian reveal the abuse of detainees, including at least four journalists, in Saudi prisons. (Reuters/Reem Baeshen)

Infographic: Journalists named in Guardian report on torture in Saudi jails

Individuals detained under Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s crackdown on dissent, including at least four journalists, are being abused and tortured in Saudi prisons, according to medical assessments prepared for King Salman and leaked to The Guardian.

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