The Foundation For The Defense Of Citizens Against State Abuses (FACIAS) has obtained a favourable decision in court against the Romanian Government after the Executive refused to answer FACIAS's questions about a meeting organised at the Government with several individuals and NGO representatives on the subject of fake news.
At the beginning of the year, a meeting was organised by the Government to set up a mechanism to sanction fake news. At the time, the Government dissociated itself from this meeting and stated that it did not want to set up a "Ministry of Truth", after FACIAS pointed out that the subject of sanctioning Fake-News is a controversial one and that it cannot be tolerated that arbitrarily a number of individuals, regardless of whom they represent, decide whether a news item is fake news or not. At the same time FACIAS has asked the Government to make public the list of participants in the meeting and the topics of the meeting hosted by the Government.
Citizens have the right to know who and how decisions are made about whether or not news reports are false.
FACIAS considers this information to be of public interest, given the significant impact of fake news on citizens. For refusing to make the information public, FACIAS sued the government, and the court ruled in FACIAS's favour!
The Bucharest Court has forced the Government in the first instance to provide the requested information! As soon as they are provided, FACIAS will make them public!
Romanians need to know what the Government is doing.
FACIAS demands accountability and transparency in government
In court, FACIAS explained that protecting citizens from fake news is an important issue and the way the issue is addressed must be transparent and balanced. A discussion involving the imposition of sanctions requires a careful approach in order not to violate the right to free expression, a fundamental value in a democratic society.
Government transparency is a right of citizens and a responsibility of the authorities.
FACIAS continues to fight against state abuses and for the protection of citizens' rights!
FACIAS Press Office