The Importance Of Freedom Of Expression In Democracy

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Abstract
“Before any human rights declarations or treaties had been adopted, the UN General Assembly adopted resolution 59(I) stating "Freedom of information is a fundamental human right and...the touchstone of all the freedoms to which the United Nations is consecrated” (Calling Of An International Conference On Freedom Of Expression, 1946). It is believed that the “freedom of expression is essential in enabling democracy to work and public participation in decision-making” (Margaritis, September 2012). Citizens cannot exercise their right to vote effectively or take part in public decision-making if they cannot feel part of their society and cannot freely express their views. Violation of freedom of expression is the first step that leads to other violations. (Margaritis, September 2012) According to article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, “everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers”. Unfortunately, in Jordan, freedom of expression has been controlled and demolished by the government regulations and rules for over a long period of time. The Jordanian government has banned any groups or individuals from expressing their views. The Jordanian government restricts the freedom of expression in the areas of politics, religion and the media. There have also been several incidents

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