Press freedom

A free press and access to information are a human right that contributes to a society built on accountability and transparency.

In countries where laws restrict press freedom, IMS works with local media partners to promote laws that ensure better working conditions for journalists.

IMS seeks to promote press freedom and freedom of expression in the countries we work in by:

  • Advocating press freedom
  • Working to ensure that rights and freedom of expression also are applied to the internet and digital platforms
  • Working to improve and for the adoption of media law and the legal environment

Media law reform

Media freedom has evolved from the right to freedom of expression which is a fundamental human right protected by major international and regional legal instruments.

In countries where the legal framework hinders freedom of expression and media freedom, IMS engages with local and international partners in media policy & law reform work. We aim at establishing the legal environment in compliance with internationally recognised standards and good practices which would be conducive to free media development as well as production and distribution of professional, public-interest journalism.

What we do:

  • Support partners engaged in drafting legislation, and national dialogues that involve public authorities, media organisations and relevant stakeholders;
  • Advocacy and awareness-raising around the need to develop and adopt the new legislation;
  • Legal education and training for journalists, civil activists, media lawyers, public officials, judges, and law enforcement authorities to help ensure the laws are properly implemented and media workers have access to professional legal aid;
  • Strategic litigation to create positive court practice and promote application ofenabling legislation;
  • Sharing of knowledge and expertise to ensure compliance of laws with internationallyrecognised standards;
  • Support to the MENA Media Law Reform process, including a digital library, making resource materials accessible to all;
  • Monitoring legislative initiatives and regulatory practice related to media sector.




Adviser, Media Law and Policy, IMS

Phone: +380 50 410 27 68

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Advocating media rights

IMS seeks to ensure that information is gathered and used to bring attention to press freedom violations and improve press freedom situation.

We also work with partners to coordinate advocacy campaigns and joint calls for action.

Attacks and censorship on the media have a double impact on Freedom of Expression. They directly violate the right of media workers in performing their work, but also obstruct the ability of the general public to access the information that would be provided through the media.

In this regard, the monitoring of media rights violations is essential for building knowledge and awareness as well as providing concrete documentation for advocacy activities that address these violations.

What we do:

  • We build the capacity of national partners to systematically monitor media rights violations;
  • We enable partners to link up to international processes to share information more widely and generate international support for their cause;
  • We work to promote coordination of local initiatives and international expertise;
  • Together with other international media support organisations, we take part in campaigns and calls for action against the perpetrators that violate the freedom of individual media workers or media outlets


Gulnara Akhundova
Gulnara Akhundova

Regional Director, Eastern Europe and Global Response, IMS

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Freedom of expression online

Ensuring that journalists and citizens alike have access to the internet and are guaranteed a free flow of information is a key priority of IMS.

As the next billion people move online in Africa, Asia and the Middle East – three of the world’s regions with the fastest growing online populations – governments are adopting legislation and repressive practices that curtail the rights to freedom of expression and access to information on the internet.

We work on both global and local levels with civil society groups groups, technology companies, and coalitions of likeminded organisations. This includes the Global Network Initiative, a forum for human rights groups and companies like Google and Facebook that works to protect freedom of expression and privacy in the ICT sector. Together with organisations like ARTICLE 19 and the Center for International Media Assistance, we also work to ensure that global internet governance bodies take the concerns of independent media in the Global South into account.



Deputy Director, IMS

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