Article en détail     N° 2013/95    Page : 725
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The confidentiality surrounding certain journalistic sources faced with the requirements of secret intelligence services

Maître de Conférences à l’Université de Limoges (OMIJ), Vice-doyen de la faculté de Droit et des Sciences économiques, Codirecteur du Master II Droit privé général et européen

22 novembre 2012 - Cour eur. dr. h., Telegraaf Media c. Pays-Bas

The legitimate right of a democratic society to protect itself against organized crimes has always led, but even more so since the tragic events of September 11th 2001, to the adoption of an avalanche of national anti-terror laws conferring on the secret services extended powers allowing them to intervene in the media. As a result, the confidentiality surrounding certain journalistic sources is jeopardized by these intelligence services that can either force journalists to cooperate in inquiries related to terrorism or place them under surveillance or even spy on them via phone-tapping. However, although the state authorities are allowed a certain degree of freedom on the subject, the European Court of Human Rights is trying to ensure that the confidentiality of journalistic sources remains safe, by obliging the secret services to respect the established conventions with regard to their interventions. This illustrates the current tendency, relayed by national judges to reintegrate anti-terror legislations under the aegis of Common Law.


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Arrêt annoté : Cour eur. dr. h., Telegraaf Media c. Pays-Bas, 22 novembre 2012