Wednesday, 18 July, 2018

Macron asks Rouhani to show restraint

Macron asks Rouhani to show restraint Macron asks Rouhani to show restraint
Melinda Barton | 12 January, 2018, 19:17

"We are going to develop our legal means of protecting democracy against fake news", Macron said in a New Year's speech to the press. It would allow a judge to order the deletion of some content, close a user's account or block access to a website.

In a speech Wednesday, Macron said he wants new rules for websites, including more transparency about their sponsored content.

French President Emmanuel Macron has called on his Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani to exercise "restraint and appeasement" during a telephone call between the two figures, as violence in Iran intensifies.

He also said limits would be put on how much could be spent on sponsored news material.

However, there is sure to be a backlash from those who believe that the media should be free from political control.

The Washington Post notes that "On the eve of the vote, Macron's campaign suffered a massive cyberattack that it compared to the hacking of Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign past year".

Le Monde's editorial board described legislation in such an area as press freedom and fake news, where the barriers are fluid and hard to define, as "inherently perilous".

Since becoming president he has also accused one Russian Federation channel of sowing disinformation about him via its website.

Macron's office said the president brought up "the number of victims from the demonstrations", saying he is concerned by the escalating violence in Iran which has led to possible dozens of deaths and hundreds of injuries.

Russian fake news journalists and bots are also said to have influenced Donald Trump's election as American president in 2016, and to have interfered with the Brexit vote in Britain in the same year.

According to local media reports, the Chinese Foreign Ministry has confirmed that the French president will visit the country from January 8-10.