Press Freedom: Al Jazeera social media campaign hit 53m within one week

The social media campaign launched by Al Jazeera Media Network demanding Press Freedom has exceeded expectations on the first week of its launch.

The social media campaign reached more than 53 million views and engagement on twitter, Facebook and YouTube during the first week alone, with 32 million views of the aligned campaign video since its launch on the 3rd July.

The campaign was launched by Al Jazeera Media Network to support Media Freedom and expression, in response to the unreasonable demands presented by the blockading countries to Qatar, which included closure of Al Jazeera Media Network and its channels, following blockage of all its websites and applications in their respective countries.

The campaign video was produced in the Arabic, English, Bosnian & Spanish languages showing a number of Al Jazeera presenters and correspondents requesting demands pertaining to Media freedom, which aim to challenge the rising antagonistic statements issued by the blockading countries against freedom of expression in the region, including the illogical demand to close Al Jazeera and terminate broadcast as a precondition to lift the blockade on Qatar.

In its campaign launch press release, Al Jazeera Media Network has depicted that the attack and fabricated campaign against Al Jazeera was not merely an attack on a leading media organization that has enhanced its global reach to millions of viewers in over 150 countries during its 20 years of service, but in reality is an assault on the foundations of media freedom.

The campaign has attained extensive support from global media organizations, including CNN, BBC, and the Huffington Post which have shared the campaign video. A number of Rights groups, journalism associations and media organizations defending media freedom have also commended the campaign and aligned slogan.

Renowned and prominent media figures; amongst which are presenters, columnists, and social media activists; have shared the campaign video on their digital accounts, condemning the attack on media organizations set forth by countries boasting their lack of support for press freedom.

As part of the campaign, Al Jazeera will be organizing a series of events in Geneva, London and other capitals, with participating media professionals and analysts to discuss the intimidation and threats faced by the Network, as well as the status of media freedom in the Arab World. The first event was organized in Geneva on the July 13 in collaboration with the Geneva Press Club, the second event titled “Al Jazeera Case” shall be organized in collaboration with the Frontline Club in London on the July 17, followed by a briefing for British parliamentarians shall be conducted on the July 19.

Since the release of the demands put forth by the blockading countries; extensive media coverage on the closure of Al Jazeera has been reported by numerous international media platforms and publications; such as The Guardian, New York Times, El Pais, Washington Times, TV Tokyo, the Norwegian and Swedish broadcasting corporations, CCTV, BBC, France 24, Channel 4, Deutsche Welle, AP, AFP and Reuters to mention a few.

The demand for the closure of Al Jazeera Media Network has been met with international condemnation, whilst the United Nations and international human rights organizations have expressed their support for media freedom and solidarity with Al Jazeera.

It is worth mentioning that Al Jazeera Media Network has won various awards in recognition of its news coverage, programs and documentaries, and its journalists have suffered intimidation and arrest, whilst others have lost their lives, while covering conflict zones.

Qatar’s National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) had threatened legal action against the four Arab nations, saying it would employ a Swiss law firm to seek compensation for those affected by the decision of the Gulf countries.

Al Jazeera says any move to shut it down is an attack on media freedom. In a statement, Al Jazeera said, “we assert our right to practice our journalism professionally without bowing to pressure from any government or authority.”

The Norwegian Press Association, the Norwegian Union of Journalists and Association of Norwegian Editors voiced their condemnation over what they called “outrageous attempt to censure public debate.”

Once again we reiterate “Journalism Is Not a Crime.” 

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