May 10th Mennella: imprisonment for journalists removed in Burkina Faso and Liberia but not in Italy

The secretary of Ossigeno emphasized in a hearing in the Italian Senate that small businesses must be protected. “No to € 50,000 fines”

“Burkina Faso and Liberia have abolished prison for journalists: Italy has been trying to do so since 2001 without success”. This was stated by the secretary of Ossigeno per le Informazione (Oxygen for Information), Giuseppe Mennella, during the event “Much Mafia Little News” which took place in the lower house of the Italian Parliament on May 10th 2019. “Everyone says they agree to remove prison sentences for the crime of defamation in print, but the real leap to be made is to get out of the logic of antiquated national laws and adopt European principles and jurisprudence (EDU and ECHR Courts)”.

Mennella recalled that Ossigeno per l’informazione during a hearing in the Italian Senate Justice Commission expressed “an opinion contrary to the bill that removes imprisonment and replaces it with a fine. A fine of 50 thousand euros will close newspapers; there are so many small publishing companies that need to be protected”. In the Senate, Mennella has asked for precedence to be given to the Di Nicola bill to limit the millionaire civil cases against journalists.

Concerning the current situation that Radio Radicale is experiencing, the secretary of Ossigeno pointed out that “turning off a voice damages pluralism and this is not only a damage for journalists but above all for citizens, true owners of the right to information”.

DAR (wt)

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