Jordan

Mass arrests of activists; HRDs and journalists hacked with Pegasus Spyware

The Law on Cybercrime Prevention has been used as a tool to detain activists and thus continues to restrict civic space. According to Democracy for the Arab World Now (DAWN) at least 150 activists were arrested during March 2022. Separately, in April 2022, Citizen Lab and FrontLine Defenders revealed that Human Rights Defenders (HRDs) and journalists in Jordan had been hacked with Pegasus spyware. The key finding of the investigation revealed that between August 2019 and December 2021, Pegasus spyware was used to hack the phones of four HRDs, journalists and lawyers. Read more

Mass arrests of activists; HRDs and journalists hacked with Pegasus Spyware

Declining civic freedoms as teachers’ union continuously targeted; internet freedom restricted

As previously reported, the Jordanian Teachers Syndicate (JTS), the country’s largest union, faced repressions after it was dissolved, with the closure of its headquarters for two years. The union has responded by staging protests, including hunger strikes. In November 2021, the governor of the capital Amman prevented the JTS from holding a press conference that was meant to discuss several issues. Additionally, activists from the union have faced ongoing intimidation, harassment and arbitrarily detentions. Freedom of expression is also under threat, with internet freedoms severely restricted in the country. Authorities have limited access to information through blocking the internet, including social media, when there are politically sensitive developments and issuing gagging orders. Read more

Declining civic freedoms as teachers’ union continuously targeted; internet freedom restricted

Targeting of teachers’ union spark protests coupled with violations on press freedom

On 25 July 2020, following a long dispute over a pay increase between the government and the teachers’ union in Jordan, authorities stormed 13 union branches and arrested 13 board members and dozens of union members. The targeted individuals were banned from discussing the case after the Attorney General issued a gag order, including on social media and an order to shut down the union for two years. These decisions sparked new protests. Read more

Targeting of teachers’ union spark protests coupled with violations on press freedom

COVID-19, a pretext to muzzle the media?

Following the emergency law issued on 17th March 2020 and the enactment of the Defence Law No. 13 of 1992, decrees issued by the Prime Minister in Jordan brought measures that restrict access to information. Within the measures taken under the state of emergency, the printing of newspapers was suspended on the ground that they may help spread the virus. Moreover, the 15th April 2020 decree prohibits “publishing, re-publishing or circulating any news about the epidemic in order to terrify people or cause panic among them via media, telephone or social media.” There have been several cases of restrictions on freedom of expression during the reporting period.


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COVID-19, a pretext to muzzle the media?

Jordan: amended laws for labour and cybercrime restrict civic space

During the first months of 2019, Jordan passed legislative amendments to the Labour Code and Cybercrime Law that violate the rights to freedom of association and threaten freedom of expression. Civil society groups actively opposed these changes and demanded a revision of these laws. Read more

Jordan: amended laws for labour and cybercrime  restrict civic space

#Maanash fightback against new law

On 30th November 2018, hundreds began protested against amendments to Jordan's Income Tax law. Organising using the hashtag, #Maanash” (we don’t have money) on social media, protesters gathered to decry hikes to fuel prices and the new law. In other developments, on 10th December 2018, Jordanian authorities announced the decision to withdraw the draft cybercrime law. Read more

#Maanash fightback against new law

Spotlight on Jordan ahead of Human Rights Review

Ahead of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC), civic space in Jordan is under the spotlight. The UNHRC will review the situation for human rights in Jordan on 8th November 2018, during the 31st session of the UNHRC. Ahead of this review, civil society groups have pointed to discrepancies in reporting. Read more

Spotlight on Jordan ahead of Human Rights Review

Restrictions on foreign funding used to limit civic space in Jordan

The recent targetting of a prominent CSO promoting freedom of expression has cast a light on restrictions faced by Jordanian civic groups when receiving money from abroad. On 10th September 2017, a newspaper reported that the The Center for Defending Freedom of Journalists (CDFJ) was issued a memo from Jordan's Company Control Department claiming that the organisation's registration status as a civil company barred it from receiving foreign funds. Read more

Restrictions on foreign funding used to limit civic space in Jordan

Restrictive laws revoked: the Monitor speaks with a Jordanian labour rights activist

As we've previously covered in the CIVICUS Monitor, worker's rights have been a key point of contention in Jordanian society. To learn more about the situation for worker's rights and the trade union movement in Jordan, the CIVICUS Monitor recently spoke to Mr. Ahmad Awad, a prominent Jordanian human rights defender who is also the Director of The Phenix Centre for Informatics and Economics Studies. Read more

Restrictive laws revoked: the Monitor speaks with a Jordanian labour rights activist

Concerns over proposed hate speech law as several arrested for criticising the king

A draft law designed to combat hate speech has worried freedom of expression advocates in Jordan. Read more

Concerns over proposed hate speech law as several arrested for criticising the king