Panafrican News Agency

Draft law to combat hate speech to be submitted to Libyan parliament

Tripoli, Libya (PANA) - The Libyan Ministry of Justice on Sunday announced the completion of a draft law against hate speech, which will be submitted to Parliament.

In a publication on its website, the ministry said the law will be presented to the Council of Ministers as part of the support to the Government of National Unity (GNU) for national reconciliation, before being forwarded to Parliament.

In early January, the government established an independent media authority to discipline professional misconduct and limit hate speech in the media.

This state body is to refer to the Libyan National Security Council to report cases of hate speech.

The body includes representatives of civil society, the judiciary, journalists and media workers known for their competence and integrity.

After the 17 February 2011 revolution, the media landscape in Libya has been widely opened up with the emergence of private TV channels, electronic media and newspapers, in most cases without meeting any legal or professional standards.

This situation has given rise to abuses with bias and lack of respect for ethics in certain media that have been used by Libyan political parties against their opponents to stir up tension and hatred by using discourse that incites violence.

The United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) has repeatedly warned against hate speech, calling on the media to exercise restraint in their reporting to avoid incitement to violence and hatred.

-0- PANA BY/JSG/BBA/MA 21Feb2022