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Case Studies


Freedom of Expression in Eastern Europe: Hungary and Poland

Three journalists, two small tables and a coffee machine tucked away inside a building in downtown Pecs, Hungary. This is the bare-bones set-up of Szabad Pecs, a website that bills itself as the only independent news source in southwest Hungary. Their newsroom is sparse because it’s all they can afford. In recent years, the government…

Citizen Journalist Elena Popa

In many respects, Elena Popa is a typical Romanian domestic carer working in Austria. She’s a caregiver of an 87-year-old grandmother, a mother of three, and a former cook. Yet to tens of thousands of domestic carers across Austria and Germany, she is also a symbol of justice: an inspirational community leader and citizen journalist…

Press Freedom in Azerbaijan: ECtHR Delivers Judgment in the Case of Khadija Ismayilova

The European Court of Human Rights has delivered its judgment today in the case of award-winning investigative journalist Khadija Ismayilova. The Court held that Azerbaijan had arbitrarily detained Khadija, in order to prevent her working as a journalist, and had violated her right to the presumption of innocence, when it arrested her on trumped up…

Malaysiakini: Supporting Independent News in Malaysia

Malaysiakini is the only independent online daily newspaper in Malaysia. With the support of Media Defence, Malaysiakini established the right to a free press in Malaysia. Editor-in-Chief and Co-Founder Steven Gan and lawyer Shanmuga Kanesalingam talk about the court case and its importance for freedom of expression and freedom of the press. With thanks to: Steven…

Italian Investigative Journalist Acquitted of Unfounded Libel Charges

A Rome court has acquitted freelance investigative journalist Raffaella Cosentino of aggravated libel. The charges were brought against her for an article she wrote about corruption and exploitation in asylum centres in Italy. Her case was supported by Media Defence. Ms Cosentino is a journalist whose reporting covers human rights issues with a particular focus…

European Court of Human Rights Finds Azerbaijan Violated the Rights of Investigative Journalist Khadija Ismayilova

On 10 January 2019, the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) delivered its judgment in the case of award-winning Azerbaijani journalist Khadija Ismayilova. Ms Ismayilova, an independent investigative journalist internationally known for her pro-democracy stance, was the target of a systematic smear campaign comprising threats, intimidations and gross violations of her privacy designed to prevent her from…

Impact Publications


A Year in Review: Our 2019 Annual Report

Our 2019 Annual Report has been designed in the style of our new branding which will be launched soon. The report includes words from across our team, case studies, interviews, stats and infographics, reflections and learnings. We discuss the general global climate for media freedom as well as specific issues and cases we’ve worked on in regions from Eastern Europe to Eastern Africa.

A Year in Review: Our 2019 Learning Report

At Media Defence, we take the monitoring and evaluation of our work very seriously, undertaking a variety of internal and external evaluations each year. We have created this Learning Report to share a summary of our key findings from 2019.

Press Freedom Guardians: Journalist Impact Survey 2019

Every year, we send a survey out to the journalists we have supported through our emergency defence fund and partner-funded defence projects. We do this to make sure that the people we support have a voice in how that support works.

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