What’s New

  • 19 December 2008

    Council of Europe adopts weak access to information convention

    Late last month, the Council of Europe adopted a weak Convention on Access to Official Documents that has been the subject of ongoing criticism from civil society and human rights groups as well as government officials, parliamentarians, and information commissioners from across Europe. According to several human rights groups, the final version of the treaty […]

  • 31 October 2008

    Constitutional Norms Often Not Reflected in Official Practice or Citizen Attitudes

    First-ever Nationwide Study Asks, “Glass Half-Full or Half-Empty?” St. Petersburg, Russian Federation — The leading access-to-information organization in Russia has published a detailed legal and sociological analysis of the state of access in the Russian Federation, identifying contradictions between the Constitutional right in Article 29 (for every person to “seek, get, transfer, produce and disseminate […]

  • 28 September 2008

    Documenting Access to Information in Latin America: Legal Milestones and Success Stories

    Silvina Acosta – Program Manager, Trust for the Americas Emilene Martínez-Morales – Transparency Programs Coordinator, National Security Archive Washington DC, – The Right to Know made headlines in Latin America during the past year.  Just a few days ago the Guatemalan Congress approved an Access to Information Law. Chile’s Transparency and Access to Information Law […]

  • 28 September 2008

    International Right to Know Day 2008: Global Phenomenon Now Includes More Than 80 Countries

    Washington, D.C., September 28, 2008 – Today’s celebration of International Right-to-Know Day marks a new watershed in the global reach of freedom of information laws – now on the books in more than 80 countries – and features celebrations in countries ranging from Mexico to Moldova, according to postings today on the www.freedominfo.org virtual network […]

  • 13 August 2008

    Chile Becomes Latest Latin American Nation to Enact FOIA Law

    Chile has become the latest country in Latin America and the world to promulgate a Freedom of Information Act law. Called the "Ley sobre Transparencia de la Función Pública y Acceso a la Información de los Órganos de la Administración del Estado" (Law on Transparency of Public Functions and Access to Information of the Agencies […]

  • 5 August 2008

    President Carter Disseminates Atlanta Declaration to Advance Right to Information Worldwide

    Last month, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter forwarded the Atlanta Declaration and Plan of Action for the Advancement of the Right to Information to all heads of state and leaders of the major international organizations and financial institutions. President Carter urged these leaders to ensure the right of access to information and its implementation and […]

  • 17 July 2008

    NIGERIA: FOI Proposal Now the Oldest Unpassed Bill

    The freedom of information bill brought before the Nigerian National Assembly in 1999 has now become the oldest unpassed legislation still pending before that body, according to the influential newspaper This Day. A July 14, 2008 article by Jude Igbanoi describes the FOI bill as the subject of "unprecedented debate, wrangling and bickering between the […]

  • 17 July 2008

    PAKISTAN: Access to Information Advocates Criticize Proposed Freedom of Information Bill

    The Consumer Rights Commission of Pakistan (CRCP) this week held a consultation on the draft Freedom of Information Bill of 2008, which is likely to soon be tabled for consideration by the legislature. The CRCP, which has been working for to strengthen the freedom of information (FOI) framework in Pakistan since 1998, expressed reservations about […]

  • 4 April 2008

    Council of Europe Ducks Open Government Advocate Calls for Reform

    Strasbourg, France – The most shocking development was the introduction of an exception to exclude Heads of State from the scope of the right to information. This was achieved by extending the optional blanket exception for Royal Households to the heads of state. Civil Society Groups participating in the process expressed their profound disappointment that […]

  • 30 January 2008

    Foreign Ministry’s Failure to Provide Documents on 1965 Japan-Korea Normalization Pact Illegal

    By Lawrence Repeta,  Omiya Law School Tokyo, Japan — More than six decades after the end of World War II, responsibility for wartime suffering remains a highly sensitive political issue in Asia, nowhere more so than in the Japan-Korea relationship. When the two countries normalized relations in 1965, one treaty provision was intended to settle […]