SKeyes Center for Media and Cultural Freedom


Beirut, Lebanon

About the organisation

The SKeyes Center for Media and Cultural Freedom was established in Beirut, Lebanon, in November 2007. Housed within the Samir Kassir Foundation, which was founded following the assassination of Lebanese journalist and historian Samir Kassir on 2 June 2005, SKeyes’ principal goals are twofold: to monitor violations of freedom of the press and culture on the one hand, and defend the rights and freedom of expression of journalists and intellectuals on the other.

Description of the organisation

The SKeyes Center aims to defend press and cultural freedom in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), and promote the establishment of an Arab public opinion that is able to protect freedom of expression. SKeyes monitors and denounces violations targeting free speech in Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, and Palestine, and conducts regular high-level training activities for Lebanese journalists to improve their coverage of sensitive issues. SKeyes also provides financial and legal support to persecuted journalists and advocates for the reform of legislations that curtail freedom of expression. SKeyes has also provided assistance to foreign journalists covering the conflict in Syria and to the families of kidnapped journalists. Additionally, SKeyes assists the European Union in delivering the annual Samir Kassir Award for Freedom of the Press to the best investigative article, best opinion piece, and best TV report from across the MENA region.

Focus areas

Academic, artistic, cultural, and scientific freedom, Freedom of expression, Journalism support and training, Press freedom.

Active in

Lebanon, Syria, Palestine, and Jordan

Team members

Ayman Mhanna, Executive Director

Gisele Khoury, Samir Kassir Foundation President

Jad Shahrour, Communication Officer

Widad Jarbouh, Lead Researcher

Micheline Khair, Administrative Officer