Baghdad / NINA / -Today, Monday, the sixth of March, the newspapers issued in Baghdad followed the visit of Prime Minister Muhammad al-Sudani to Egypt and the discussion of the draft law on freedom of expression, assembly and peaceful demonstration.

Al-Sabah newspaper, published by the Iraqi Media Network, followed the visit of Prime Minister Mohamed Al-Sudani to Egypt and his talks with Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi.

Al-Sabah said, “Prime Minister Muhammad al-Sudani expressed Iraq’s readiness to move forward in maturing joint work with the Arab Republic of Egypt, and to open new horizons of cooperation and integration in various fields.”

It quoted a statement by the Prime Minister’s Media Office: “Al-Sudani met with al- Sisi, and during the meeting they discussed bilateral relations between the two countries, and ways to consolidate them, in addition to discussing a number of regional and international issues of common interest. The meeting also witnessed the discussion of activating joint committees, in a way that supports partnership between the two brotherly countries.

The newspaper added: “Al-Sisi expressed Egypt’s desire and readiness to cooperate with Iraq in various fields,” stressing his pride in Iraq and its status and role in the region.”

It indicated that the Prime Minister, Mohamed Al-Sudani, and the Egyptian Prime Minister, Mustafa Madbouly, chaired the official talks held between the delegations of the two countries. Al-Sudani expressed his pleasure at accepting the invitation and having a constructive meeting with the Egyptian side.

Al-Sudani affirmed Iraq’s desire to work on developing relations, raising the level of trade exchange, and activating joint committees between the two countries to the level of implementation.

The newspaper continued: “The Iraqi side expressed openness towards strengthening bilateral cooperation frameworks with the Arab Republic of Egypt, and studying the signing of a number of joint agreements during the work of the Joint Higher Committee, which is scheduled to be held during the coming month of May or June.”

Al-Zawra newspaper, published by the Iraqi Journalists Syndicate, continued discussing the draft law on freedom of expression, assembly, and peaceful demonstration.

The newspaper said: “The Parliamentary Human Rights, Culture, Tourism, Antiquities and Media Committees held, yesterday, Sunday, a hearing session chaired by the First Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mohsen Al-Mandalawi, and in the presence of the President of the Iraqi Journalists Syndicate, President of the Federation of Arab Journalists Moayad Al-Lami, to discuss the draft law on freedom of expression, assembly and peaceful demonstration.”

It referred to the assertion of the head of the Iraqi Journalists Syndicate, President of the Federation of Arab Journalists, Moayad Al-Lami: “The draft law on freedom of expression in its current form violates the constitution.”

It quoted Al-Lami as saying in a speech during the hearing session: “The law in its current form is contrary to Article 38 of the Constitution, and the legislator did not request that this be regulated by law, only Paragraph 3 of Article 38, which talked about freedom of assembly and peaceful demonstration, and this is regulated by law, which is the first violation constitutionality”.

He added: “Freedom of opinion and expression is not for all means absolute and leaving things contrary to the judiciary,” indicating: “Public morals are not meant by absolute morals, as there is a judiciary, the Penal Code, and clear constitutional articles, and the expression of opinion is guaranteed to all, and this is the first reservation because the law spoke about freedom of assembly and peaceful demonstration only, and this shall be regulated by law.”

Al-Lami continued: “Freedom of expression is a constitutional right, and many neighboring countries stipulate that the state guarantees freedom of expression, and that the citizen expresses his opinion in writing and other means of expression, provided that it does not exceed the limits of the legislated laws in force in the Iraqi state or any other country,” explaining: “Freedom of opinion and expression always appears in one wording in all legislation, but the draft omitted the text on freedom of expression, which is the basis and essence of freedom of expression,” suggesting rephrasing by stipulating freedom of opinion and expression.

The President of the Iraqi Journalists Syndicate affirmed: “The most important aspect of freedom of opinion and expression is freedom of the press, and it must be included in the draft law and be a clear text,” pointing out that “Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948 stipulates that everyone has the right to enjoy freedom of opinion and expression, this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and opinions to others through any media, regardless of frontiers.”

While Al-Zawraa quoted the Prime Minister’s Adviser for Human Rights Affairs, Zaidan Khalaf, as saying: “It was decided to form a committee headed by the Prime Minister’s Adviser for Human Rights and the membership of representatives of the Ministry of Justice, the High Commission for Human Rights and the General Secretariat of the Council of Ministers regarding the draft law on freedom of expression and peaceful demonstration “.

He added: “The committee held several meetings over a period of two weeks with civil society organizations in the presence of UNAMI, and we came out with a draft of amendments that were submitted to the House of Representatives by an official letter from the Prime Minister’s Office,” noting: “The draft law that was sent to the House of Representatives took into account several observations that were present in previous draft.

In another matter, Al-Zaman newspaper followed the continued controversy over the independence of the Federal Supreme Court and the constitutionality of its decisions.

In this regard, it indicated that the President of the Supreme Judicial Council, Faiq Zaidan, affirmed the legitimacy and independence of the Federal Supreme Court, rejecting any accusation that its decisions were unconstitutional.

It quoted Zaidan as saying, during his meeting with a group of newspaper editors and media professionals: “It is unfair to describe the court in any negative capacity against the background of its decisions on contentious issues between the parties to the political process.”

He added, “This court derives the legitimacy of its decisions from the legislative capacity of Parliament, which took over the formation of the court,” noting: “The members of the court consist of judges and experts, and that delaying the joining of experts due to political differences does not mean that its decisions are unconstitutional.”

Zidane stressed: “All the accusations against the court are incorrect.”

The head of the Judicial Council announced, according to the newspaper, the reconfiguration of the Publication and Media Cases Court, pointing to the addition of journalist experts in cooperation with the Iraqi Journalists Syndicate in taking decisions on complaints referred to it, acknowledging the low legal culture of media professionals and citizens, which leads to misinterpretation of some judicial decisions and questioning its independence. / End

Source: National Iraqi News Agency