Expression

The Constitution, in Article 39, upholds the freedom of expression, including the right to obtain public information. However, the government has stakes in a number of media concerns and there have been instances of it interfering in the state broadcaster. There are also some concerns about the concentration of private media ownership, and evidence of self-censorship out of fear of losing advertising from state-owned concerns, an issue that became more prominent during the economic downturn. There have been recent cases of journalists being pressured by the state to reveal sources, and being interrogated or put on trial for alleged uses of classified information. A 2008 change to the Penal Code that made it harder to publish information in the public interest was overturned in 2015. There are no restrictions on internet access. Defamation remains a criminal offence, with specific offences of defamation against the head of state and foreign states, although the law was amended in 2015 to mean that public officials can only bring defamation cases in their capacity as private citizens. There are reported instances of hate speech against minorities.