The Observatory for the Freedom of Press, Publishing and Creation in Tunisia was established on 3rd May 2001. It is a member of IFEX. It aims at:
* Investigating the conditions of media, books and publications in all creation fields, literature, art, etc and publishing reports on them
* Paying attention to all forms of sponsorship on press, internet, books, theatre, cinema, music and different other modes of expression
* Proposing procedures and reforms that help to improve the legislations to guarantee freedom of expression and creation, especially Act 19 of the International Declaration of Human Rights, and the International Convention for Civil and Political Rights
Miss Naziha Reguiba assured during a workshop that ‘the Tunisian administration refuses to license the observatory and claim that the word observatory can not be used but by the state. The observatory thus filed a law suit’
The observatory managed in a short time to take a respected position in the Tunisian human rights community. It cooperated with many Tunisian organisations and international ones. It is also a member of IFEX.
The website was established in 2006. It uses three languages; Arabic, French and English.
The website consists of many sections, among them:
* Statements; it contains the positions of the observatory regarding national issues and causes related to freedom of media and expression in the Arab world
* Links; it contains links to a number of Arabic and international organizations
The major obstacles that face the observatory in using the internet perfectly are:
* The Tunisian governmental control of internet services and blocking of the website
* Depriving activists of internet access as a punishment for their activities during the international information summit in Tunisia. It has become difficult to send e-mails on the website's updates
Many of the issues proposed by Miss Naziha have solutions. The blocking of the website or the refusal to register the observatory should not prevent from developing the website, especially as it is being updated from Morocco not Tunisia.
The oppression of the Tunisian government could be a justification for not using the internet so widely, but the website stays limited as long as it is being updated from Morocco.