Syria: Facebook Launches Massive Campaign against Accounts of Syrian Revolutionary Movement
STOCKHOLM - Skyline International condemns Facebook indiscriminate campaign against Syrian activists by closing their accounts without a clear explanation. The company has shut hundreds of accounts and pages related to the Syrian revolutionary movement, undermining their rights to free speech and violating one of the essential human rights principles," said Skyline.
The Syrian movement activists accuse Facebook of identifying with the Syrian regime by closing their pages. They have also accused Facebook of closing their accounts without violating the company’s terms and standards or posting content that violates its policy.
Skyline points out that the Syrian revolutionary movement's pages, which vary from media pages, official and civil institutions, activists, and websites, operate in an environment of ongoing conflict, which requires them to disclose violations daily. "These measures are to muzzle dissent voices and restrict the Syrian revolution. They also could limit voices of Syria's victims and obstacle their rescue and assistance", Skyline adds.
Skyline believes that Facebook's actions violate the right to freedom of opinion and expression to all, regardless of their origins or beliefs. This right is also stipulated in general international conventions, and it's binding on everyone, whether individuals, institutions, organizations, or countries.
The International Foundation highlights that closing and deleting accounts is a flagrant violation of all international covenants and laws that guarantee freedom of opinion and expression. These actions also reflect the double standards of the Facebook administration.
Skyline points out that the "Facebook" administration may consider that some of these posts violate its criteria. Still, it should be noted that it is crucial for these pages to fully share information and posts without restrictions due to the particular nature of the Syrian situation.
Moreover, Skyline underlines that these actions taken by Facebook deny the values, principles and conditions that its administration is committed to, which is to create a broad space of freedom of opinion and expression. Furthermore, Skyline asks the Facebook administration to undo its recent measures taken against the accounts of Syrian activists.
The International Foundation insists that the "freedom of expression is a basic human right on which all civil liberties are based. It is a fundamental human right stipulated in Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights." In line with other inherent freedoms such as the freedom of information and freedom of the press.
The United Nations recognizes that human rights must be applied in online and offline networks. Also, all covenants guarantee every citizen the right to use and share the information by various mediums, and this is one of the least that a person should have.
Accordingly, Skyline International calls on the Facebook administration to seriously consider the main reason for closing any page despite the pressures from some authorities for political purposes. It also asks Facebook to clarify its current policies regarding closed pages.