Lina al-Chawaf, Executive Director of Rozana Media Foundation, delivered a speech on "Freedom of Journalism and Speech" at the opening of the ARIJ 11th Annual Forum on Investigative Journalism at the Dead Sea in Jordan.
The ARIJ Forum had been held for three days starting from November 30, with the aim of scrutinizing the way technology and changing digital tools can improve research and coverage.
During her speech, al-Chawaf stressed that many Syrian journalists have passed away just for the sake of disclosing the truth and enlightening the world about the killing, torture, displacement, and detention crimes that are being committed in Syria.
The Executive Director of Rozana mentioned a number of journalists who have worked with her and who have been victims of freedom of expression and journalism. Among them were “Mohammad al-Qassim, Osama Hassan, Samar al-Saleh, Ziad al-Arabi, who was killed under torture when he was only 19 years old, as well as Raed al-Fares, the founder of Radio Fresh, and his colleague journalist Hamoud Junaid.”
Al-Chawaf also talked about the role of Raed al-Fares" and Hamoud Junaid who founded a local radio station, Radio Fresh, and worked in it starting from mosques, through banners that demanded freedom and other demands.
Al-Chawaf pointed out that, about two months ago, al-Fares brought back in the female voice to Radio Fresh after it was canceled under the order of Hay'at Tahrir al-Sham. Al-Fares also started re-broadcasting songs, and was then pursued by Tahrir al-Sham, which wanted to arrest him. Tahrir al-Sham later assassinated him with his colleague journalist Hamoud Junaid, because of his “defiance”.
Al-Chawaf asked the activists in international organizations that advocate the defense of freedom of journalism and freedom of expression about ways to protect journalists and provide them with security.