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SKeyes Center for Media and Cultural Freedom - Samir Kassir Foundation

Monitoring MPs’ Human Rights and Free Speech Positions – April 2024

Tuesday , 14 May 2024

Background and Context


In April 2024, there was a notable decline in the number of human rights-related statements issued by Lebanese Members of Parliament (MPs), marking the lowest monthly count since October 2023. A total of 38 statements concerning human rights were recorded.


Among these statements, 50% were dedicated to commemorating the Armenian genocide and advocating for justice to all victims. 21% focused on women’s rights, and 13% addressed the ongoing genocide in Palestine.


From October 2023 to March 2024, the most prominent human rights topic discussed on social media by MPs was the war in Gaza, which tragically resulted in the death of at least 34,502 Palestinians. Although this topic did not maintain its position as the most discussed in April, it still retained significant attention.




In April 2024, 25 MPs collectively made 38 statements regarding human rights and public freedoms, posting them on their personal accounts on X and Facebook.


These statements have been classified into six categories:


  • Armenian genocide
  • Women’s rights
  • Genocide in Palestine
  • Freedoms and democracy
  • Fighting hate speech and racism
  • Judicial independence


Data Display


It is important to acknowledge that the data collected in this process may not be exhaustive. Nonetheless, despite its inherent limitations, the gathered data provides a foundation for generating hypotheses concerning the discourse surrounding human rights issues. This analysis specifically focuses on human rights, journalists’ rights, and freedom of speech within the public political discourse throughout April 2024.


Figure 1. Distribution of data across Members of Parliament

Figure 2. Distribution of data across political parties and groups

Figure 3. Distribution of data based on group type

Figure 4. Distribution of data across theme of statement


Table 1. Distribution of data across theme of statement and group name




In April 2024, among the 38 statements made, a significant focus was placed on the Armenian genocide. Specifically, 19 statements delved into this topic.


Furthermore, eight statements tackled women’s rights (MPs Halimé Kaakour, Inaya Ezzedine, Mark Daou, and Paula Yacoubian), five focused on the genocide in Palestine (MPs Halimé Kaakour, Ihab Matar, Inaya Ezzedine, Osama Saad, and Tony Frangieh), three highlighted freedoms and democracy (MPs Mark Daou, Michel Moawad, and Michel Moussa), two fought against hate speech and racism against Syrian refugees, made by MPs Jamil Al Sayyed and Mark Daou (commenting on the violence inflicted against them as  a reaction to the killing of Pascal Sleiman, head of the Lebanese Forces’ Jbeil district office), and the remaining statement was centered on judicial independence and was made by MP Halime Kaakour.


To gain a deeper understanding of the political landscape and identify the most vocal groups on human rights in April 2024, an examination of the total count of statements made by each group proves insightful. The following tables provide an overview of these findings:

Table 2. Ranking based on absolute numbers - political groups with highest to lowest numbers of statements


Table 3. Ranking based on relative numbers - from the political group with the highest percentage of members who made statements to the one with the lowest percentage


Table 4. Ranking of the top-10 MPs who shared most statements from June 2022 till April 2024


Among the 25 MPs who released human rights-related statements in April 2024, MPs Halimé Kaakour and Paula Yaacoubian stood out with four statements each.


Since June 2022, MP Mark Daou has consistently maintained the highest count of total statements issued.


“Poor Performers”: Anti-Human Rights Standpoints


While several MPs addressed statements related to Syrian refugees in April 2024, there was no hateful speech and incitement except for one. MP Said El Asmar, from the Lebanese Forces, stated: “We call for the establishment of safe areas and the return of Syrian refugees because they are intolerable.”

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