On 2nd November, the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva will conduct the third cycle of its Universal Periodic Review (UPR) on Mongolia’s human rights performance. Reporters Without Borders (RSF) urges UN member states to join its call for a media reform for guarantees of press freedom. Similar requests have been made by Globe International Center (GIC), a Mongolian press freedom NGO which in September denounced the government’s inaction since the last UPR in 2015.
“RSF commends the positive steps taken by Mongolia in the past decades towards media liberalisation, but its regulation still requests significant reforms guaranteeing editorial freedom for journalists and a better protection of their sources”, says Cédric Alviani, RSF East Asia Bureau Head.
Although Mongolia broadly respects the principles of liberty and media pluralism, its regulation still lacks basic legal protections for confidential sources and current defamation laws lead to journalistic self-censorship or harsh fines. In accordance with this review process, Human Rights Council member states contributing to the UPR cycle may choose to recommend that Mongolia adopt the reforms proposed by RSF.
In June, RSF called on the Mongolian political parties and the candidates to voice their commitment to support newsroom independence to tackle corruption.
Mongolia ranked 73rd out of 180 in the 2020 RSF World Press Freedom Index.