News executives and journalists have urged the leadership of the House of Representatives in Tunisia to reverse a ban on the media attending the inaugural session of parliament.
Both the National Union of Tunisian Journalists (SNJT) and the Tunisian Federation of Newspaper Directors (FDTJ) have demanded that representatives of all media, local and international organizations, be given access to freely exercise their profession role in society.
The SNJT stated that the prohibition of journalists from covering the opening of parliament constitutes a “dangerous precedent that confiscates a right guaranteed by the Tunisian Constitution and law”. Furthermore, the union warned against any attempt to favour public media over private media in a bid to divide the media landscape and restrict citizens' access to information.
Following the ban, the SNJT held a press conference to address the issue and examine ways to combat "abusive practices" against the press. The Union warned against any attempt to limit the independence of journalistic work and stressed the need to preserve the freedom of the press.
The FTDJ called on the Assembly of Representatives of the People to immediately abandon the measure and allow representatives of all local and international media to freely exercise their work. The Federation emphasized that this ban is a violation of citizens' right to free and pluralistic media and expressed its solidarity with all journalists and photographers prevented from accessing the parliament's premises.