06.12.2016 - UNESCO Montevideo Office

An invitation to debate: How judiciary systems can foster the protection of freedom of expression on line?

Next December 7th, within the framework of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) “Enabling Inclusive and Sustainable Growth” (6th-9th December), the session “The Role of Judiciary Systems and Internet Governance” will be held in Guadalajara, Mexico. It is an invitation open to IGF participants and to those interested in joining through social media streaming.

Most societies are truly based on the rule of law. Elected governments rely on their judicial branch to deliver on its obligations to its citizens and to protect and promote universal human rights. As stated in the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, Goal 16: Peace, stability, human rights and effective governance based on the rule of law are important conduits for sustainable development. It is therefore central that this branch be strengthened, giving it greater responsibility and relevance to address new challenges related to the Internet and freedom of expression. Among these challenges there is the relationship between the governments and social media networks. One example has been the shutting down of these communication platforms after decisions of Courts, thus violating freedom of expression and other correlated rights.

As a response to this and other challenges, over the last few years UNESCO and the Inter American Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression have teamed with a number of judicial systems in Ibero America (including supreme courts and judicial training schools and institutions). The goal is to strengthen capacities and built new knowledge among judicial operators hindered by new issues associated to the Internet and freedom of expression, access to information and the safety of journalists. This is ground-breaking and inspiring work with a group of outstanding stakeholders.

UNESCO, in coordination with with the Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, proposes this session to widen debate and continue fostering innovative responses and cooperation. The invitation is to join international experts working on Internet Government and the role of the Judiciary Systems as an opportunity to access complementary approaches from the multilateral arena (UNESCO, Rapporteur, International Court); the Judiciary Power (Mexico); Civil Society (Brazil); and the Academy (University of Externado, Colombia).

Join now here

Meet the speakers:

Ms. Eugenia Paola Carmona Díaz de León, School of Judges, Mexico

Mr. Edison Lanza, OAS Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression

Mr. Toby Mendel, Executive Director, Centre for Law and Democracy

Mr. Carlos Alfonso Souza 

Session chairman: 

Mr. Frank la Rue, Assistant Director General for Communication and Information, UNESCO


Mr. Guilherme Canela, Coordinator, Communication and Information Sector, UNESCO Montevideo

Ms. Xianhong Hu, Program Specialist in Communication and Information at UNESCO

Session premises: Workshop Room 3 PALCCO, Guadalajara, Mexico

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