Estonia announced as new co-chair of the Media Freedom Coalition

Tallinn conference 2022 hall

As current co-chairs of the MFC, Canada and the Netherlands are pleased to join Estonia in announcing that Estonia will succeed Canada as MFC co-chair on July 1, 2023.

Estonia has been a highly engaged member of the Coalition since joining in September 2019. In addition, Estonia has a strong track record on media freedom, including providing emergency visas and residency permits for journalists at risk, and since 2021, has ranked in the top 10 of Reporters Without Borders’ World Press Freedom Index.

Estonia also hosted the 2022 Global Conference on Media Freedom in Tallinn (above). 

Media freedom is increasingly endangered worldwide. Journalists, media workers and independent media outlets around the globe continue to be subjected to threats such as restrictive laws, censorship, punitive measures and physical violence simply for doing their work.

As new co-chair, Estonia will lead the Coalition in its mission to protect and promote the human rights of journalists and media workers around the world. Estonia is committed to working with the members of the MFC to achieve its shared goals and objectives.

The chairship of the Coalition rotates among member states on a biannual basis. It was initially taken up by Canada and the United Kingdom, with the latter passing on its co-chair role to the Netherlands in February 2022.

Mélanie Joly, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Canada, said: “As Canada concludes its leadership role as co-chair of the Media Freedom Coalition, I am thrilled to welcome Estonia as the next co-chair. Estonia brings strong experience to effectively steer the MFC going forward, and I am confident that under their leadership, together with the Netherlands, the Coalition will further advance media freedom and expand diplomatic engagement on this critical issue.”

Margus Tsahkna, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Estonia, said: “Estonia is honoured to follow the founding chair of the Coalition, Canada, as co-chair. We will continue, together with the Netherlands, the crucial work in advancing media freedom and protecting journalists. After organizing the Third Global Conference on Media Freedom in Tallinn in 2022, we have taken concrete steps to help journalists at risk by providing emergency visas as well as 35 residency permits a year to continue their essential work.”

Wopke Hoekstra, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, said: “As Estonia takes over the co-chairmanship of the Media Freedom Coalition from Canada, I want to extend my sincere gratitude to Canada for their efforts and leadership. The Netherlands is honoured to be co-chairing the Media Freedom Coalition together with Estonia and we look forward to working together to advance media freedom, to protect journalists and media workers, and to ensure information as a public good”.


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