AMMAN — President of the Jordan Press Association (JPA) Rakan Saaydeh on Monday urged lawmakers to reconsider the 2023 cybercrimes draft’s stiffened penalties and vague terms such as "incitement of hatred, character assassination and false news".

During a meeting with Lower House Speaker Ahmad Safadi, Saaydeh said that some articles of the cybercrimes bill must be reviewed and amended for the preservation and protection of freedom of both press and speech, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.

He indicated that the association is against any violations or abuses that may occur on social media platforms; however, actions that impact freedom of the press are "unacceptable".

Safadi indicated that the Lower House considers the media an "essential" partner in monitoring current events and as a "corner stone" in the comprehensive modernisation process, which addresses the political, economic and administrative tracks under Royal directives.

Lawmakers support freedom of speech and freedom of the press, said Safadi, noting that penalties and fines have become necessary to punish violators and blackmailers who target society and its safety.

He underscored that the Lower House handles the draft law's articles with the "highest levels" of national responsibility.

Head of the Lower House's Legal Committee Ghazi Thneibat stressed commitment to acknowledging multiple perspectives regarding the draft law, pointing out that the committee is holding meetings with various stakeholders to improve the draft law in a way that guarantees press freedoms.

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