Action Summary

The Action promotes freedom of expression (FoE) and freedom of the media (FoM) in North Macedonia and contributes in the improvement of the application of European standards in this domain. Building upon the results and experience of the previous phase, the Action will continue to work with a range of actors responsible for the applications of these standards, namely: judges, prosecutors, lawyers, police officers, representatives of media regulatory authorities, journalists, students and other media actors.

The Council of Europe intervention on freedom of expression and the media is based on a holistic approach that aims at involving and engaging all relevant actors and stakeholders in improving the application of freedom of expression, based on the European standards and best practices. To achieve this, the Action will closely work with (1) legal professionals: Academy for Judges and Public Prosecutors and Macedonian Bar Association; (2) ) Media regulatory authorities – Agency for Audio and Audio Visual Media Services; (3) Media actors and Universities – Association of Journalists of Macedonia and Faculty of Law and Journalism ‘Iustinianus Primus’, building their capacities by adopting a dynamic methodology and using an inclusive approach in order to generate dialog between the different actors and relevant stakeholders.

This Action is part of the Council of Europe/European Union "Horizontal Facility for Western Balkans and Turkey II 

Expected Results

 Members of the judiciary, legal professionals and police officers will be more aware on improving the application of the European Convention on Human Rights and the Court case-law on Freedom of Expression;

 Media Regulatory authority's capacities will be further strengthened and consolidated in better exercising its authority in regards to human rights protection and freedom of expression;

 Media actors and relevant stakeholders, including Universities and Civil Society cooperate and contribute to an enabling environment for freedom of expression and freedom of the media.


Guidelines on protecting freedom of expression in times of crisis

Information Document: Respecting democracy, rule of law and human rights in the framework of the COVID-19 sanitary crisis

Disinformation and electoral campaign (in Macedonian)

Recommendation R(97) 20 on Hate speech

Algorithms and human rights 

Guide to Article 17 Prohibitation of abuse of rights - ECHR

Recommendation 1805(2007) of the Parliamentary Assembly on Blasphemy, religious insults and hate speech against persons on grounds of their religion

SG/Inf(2020)19 The impact of the sanitary crisis on freedom of expression and media freedom

Decl(17/05/2019) Declaration of the Committee of Ministers on the 70th anniversary of the Council of Europe

CM/Rec(2020)1 from the Committee of Ministers to the member-states on the human rights impacts of algorithmic systems

CM/Rec(2016)4 from the Committee of Ministers on protection of journalism, safety of journalists and other media actors

Pluralism of media ownership in the new media environment – A Study for the Agency for Audio and Audiovisual Media Services of North Macedonia

HELP Online course on protection and safety of journalists

Coincil of Europe HELP online course on FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION 

Guide to implementation of CM/Rec(2016)4 on protection of journalism, safety of journalists and other media actors

Study: Political Advertising: A Comparative Study with Refelections on the Situation in South - East Europe

Bulletin no 2: Latest developments in the case - law of the European Court of Human Rights on freedom of expression 

Transparency of the Assembly of the Republic of North Macedonia during the COVID- 19 pandemic

GUIDELINES of the Agency for Audio and Audiovisual Media Serviceson monitoring of the application of reporting standardsin gender-based violence cases in the media

Media regulatory authorities and media pluralism (Regional publication)


Duration: 36 months (May 2019 – May 2022)

Beneficiaries/Partners: North Macedonia

Funding: The European Union and the Council of Europe

Budget: 510 000 EUR

*This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244/1999 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence.


Aleksandra Bogdanovska        Senior Project Officer                + 389 2 3100 322                      contact

Simona Trajkoska               Project Assistant                        + 389 2 3100 325                     contact