Netizen Report: Are France’s Human Rights Commitments Crumbling Post-Charlie?

Global Voices Advocacy’s Netizen Report offers an international snapshot of challenges, victories, and emerging trends in Internet rights around the world.

French human rights defenders are navigating new depths of hypocrisy in national policymaking in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo attack. Since January, hundreds of Internet users have been punished over comments on political controversies surrounding the attack. And just last week, the French Interior Ministry ordered Internet service providers to block five websites that it says condoned terrorism. According to AFP, the blocked sites included al-Hayat Media Center, which has been identified as a media producer associated with ISIS. Also blocked was, which now appears to have been taken down from the Web altogether. None of these blocking orders were reviewed by a judge. An unnamed Interior Ministry official said that it expected to issue such bans on “dozens” of additional websites, exercising new counterterrorism rules proposed in November and passed in February. read more

Further stories from this Netzien Report:

  • Turkey uses French example to justify censorship
  • Macedonian journalist speaks out on surveillance
  • Indian Supreme Court says no to censorship
  • China anti-censorship site under attack
  • Human Rights Watch website blocked briefly in Egypt
  • Twitter’s verified users test new anti-harassment feature
  • Digital rights advocates launch principles for online platforms


Camilla Wood

UK based Legal Aid Lawyer

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