Group says 262 journalists imprisoned worldwide, record high

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Updated 14 December 2017
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Group says 262 journalists imprisoned worldwide, record high

NEW YORK: An advocacy group for journalists said Wednesday that 262 people are imprisoned around the world for their work gathering and reporting the news, a record high.
The Committee to Protect Journalists said the number of imprisoned journalists is the highest since it began conducting its annual survey of journalists behind bars in the early 1990s. It said the 2017 number topped last year’s total of 259 imprisoned journalists, the highest number until then.
“The pattern reflects a dismal failure by the international community to address a global crisis in freedom of the press,” said the group’s editorial director, Elana Beiser.
The three countries where the most journalists are imprisoned are Turkey, China and Egypt, the organization said. There are 73 journalists behind bars in Turkey, 41 in China and 20 in Egypt, it said.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan last year began a crackdown on journalists he suspected of having links to the organizers of a failed coup.
The crackdown has continued, the advocacy group said, with Turkish authorities accusing some journalists of terrorist activity based solely on their reported use of a messaging app, Bylock, or bank accounts at institutions supposedly linked to the coup plotters.
The Committee to Protect Journalists, which is based in New York, said Erdogan’s government “appeared to pay little price for its repressive tactics,” noting that US President Donald Trump hosted Erdogan at the White House in May and has praised him as a friend.
The organization also noted that Trump, a Republican, visited China in November and made no public reference to human rights despite recent abuses and the arrests of journalists.
The group said its list is a snapshot of those journalists who were incarcerated for doing their jobs on Dec. 1. The list does not include journalists who were imprisoned and released throughout the year.


Arab Social Media Influencer Summit kicks off in Dubai

Updated 10 December 2018
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Arab Social Media Influencer Summit kicks off in Dubai

DUBAI: The Arab Social Media Influencers Summit (ASMIS) has begun at the Dubai World Trade Center, with social media influencers from all over the Arab region gathering together for two days of networking, panels, and discussion. The event, organized by the Dubai Press Club, will take place over the 12th and 13th of December.

This is the third edition of the summit, which is also shaping up to be its biggest yet. The event features a star-studded guest list, with prominent names such as Lojain Omran, Ola Farahat, Hussain AlJasmi, and perhaps most notably, Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah of Jordan, who is slated to deliver the keynote address.

“We are delighted to welcome an iconic Arab figure such as Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah, who is also a well-known character in the field of humanitarian and charitable work with an emphasis on issues related to education and youth development,” said Mona Ganem Al Merri, President of Dubai Press Club and Chairperson of the ASMIS Organising Committee.

The event will also be including talks, or “Dardachat”, given by high-profile influencers. Huda and Mona Kattan, known for their highly-popular makeup brand Huda Beauty, will be talking about their extensive experiences in the field of building a beauty brand. Murad and Nataly Osmann, creators of the famous “#followmeto” project that went viral on Instagram, will also be discussing their influences and inspirations, and talking about their ascent to fame.

Featured panelists include Roaya Saleh; Bahraini restaurateur and founder of Villa Mamas restaurant, who will be sharing her experiences with the restaurant industry, Tracy Harmoush; fitness guru and adrenaline junkie, and Max of Arabia; the half-British, half-American social media star who lives in the UAE and speaks perfect Arabic.