Bangin Sido, Free Media Union official (a human rights union working to defend the freedom of the press and the rights of journalists in the Autonomous Administration-held areas) said that the absence of a comprehensive professional law regulating journalistic works increases the violations against journalists and causes "chaos.”
On February 12, the Media Union published a report on violations made against of journalists for the years 2018-2019 in northeastern Syria. The report mentioned that 4 journalists had lost their lives and 7 others were injured while covering the attack of the Turkish army and its affiliated armed groups on the areas of Ras al-Ain and Tal Abyad.
The report issued by the Union also pointed to violations committed against journalists in the regions of northeastern Syria, where 3 journalists were arrested by the Internal Security Forces (Asayish).
Moreover, Sido said that the Union has contacted the Autonomous Administration institutions several times regarding the violations committed against journalists, but without receiving any response.
"We do not receive any response from them, at least these institutions should question the content of the complaints," he said.
Furthermore, Sido attributed the cause of this "chaos" to the lack of a comprehensive professional law to regulate the practice of journalism in northeastern Syria.
A committee of independent journalists, the Free Media Union, and the Information Office of the Autonomous Administration was recently formed with the aim of drafting a comprehensive law regarding the practice of journalistic works in northeastern Syria, and to protect journalists from the violations they are exposed to.
The Free Media Union lacked the method of documenting violations, but they underwent a training workshop that gave them the skill in this field, according to Sido. “We relied on consistent information and communications with hospitals and our colleague journalists near the scene," Sido said.
"We have been sending violations we have documented periodically to the international and local organizations such as CPJ, and they have regular contact with us and have relied on our documentation in their reports," he added.