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Tuesday, April 19, 2016, 11:30 - 13:00


The Freedom of Expression in Japan

David Kaye

UN Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression

Language: The speech and Q & A will be in English with simultaneous interpretation


In December, David Kaye, the United Nations Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression, was due to arrive in Japan to look into concerns about declining media freedom. His trip was abruptly cancelled. The Japanese government said it was "unable to arrange meetings" with officials. The cancellation was all the more puzzling because it was the government that had invited him. Now Kaye has finally secured his trip.

His visit comes amid growing concerns about threats to freedom of expression in Japan. These include the 2014 Protection of Specially Designated Secrets Act and other proposed constitutional revisions that critics say will limit or curtail the activities of journalists. The latest salvo was the suggestion in February by Sanae Takaichi, the communications minister, to shut down television companies that flout rules on political impartiality.

"Scrutiny of official attitudes to freedom of expression should be unproblematic, and indeed a priority, for a democratic country like Japan," said Article 19, a London-based watchdog after Kaye’s first visit was blocked. Article 19 also heard "numerous concerns" about freedom of expression when it met academics, journalists, lawyers and members of civil society during a trip to Japan last year.

His first official press conference will be at the FCCJ on April 19. Come along and hear this important report.

Please reserve in advance, 3211-3161 or on the website (still & TV cameras inclusive). Reservations and cancellations are not complete without confirmation.

Professional Activities Committee

 Apr 19 16 PC David Kaye023

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