Skip to content

Exporting Repression

Authoritarian governments are increasingly seeking to spread their values beyond their borders and put pressure their opponents abroad. Regimes are learning from each other new ways to restrict the freedoms of their citizens and are collaborating to crack down on perceived trouble makers. This programme will look at the role of traditionalist, illiberal civil society groups in promoting the authoritarian viewpoints, as well as the way authoritarian regimes use Western lobbying to manage their image. It will explore ‘the Information Battle’ over the use of media, social media and the wider internet to promote authoritarian messages and challenge independent voices.

Publications in this programme
Articles relating to this programme
Events in this programme

Taking back control? How Russia, the UK and EU member states are seeking to regulate the internet

This Foreign Policy Centre and Article 19 seminar seeks to examine the similarities and differences between the approach being taken by Russia, the UK and a number of EU member states in managing the online lives of their citizens. The event will explore ways to tackle challenges related to protection of freedom of expression online. The seminar will examine how Roskomnadzor, the Russian state censorship agency, operates a blacklist of websites and ...

More info

Vicky Ford MP, Science and Technology Select Committee, APPG on Cyber Security

Sarkis Darbinyan, Co-Founder of Roskomsvoboda and Head of the Digital Rights Center

Alexander Isavnin, Internet Protection Society

Barbora Bukovska, Senior Director for Law and Policy, Article 19

James Ball, Author and Journalist

Chair: Ian Lucas MP, Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee

Listen to an audio recording of the event here.

June 18, 2019

Committee Room 8, House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA

Ending Impunity: How to improve safety for journalists at risk and deliver justice for crimes against them

This Foreign Policy Centre (FPC) event, supported by the Justice for Journalists Foundation, will examine the safety risks faced by journalists searching for the truth against powerful interests. The event will focus on what steps can be taken to help prevent attacks on journalists, increase their security and find ways to deter those who would wish to stop their work through violent means. It will examine the main obstacles faced ...

More info

Maria Ordzhonikidze, Director of Justice for Journalists Foundation

Rebecca Vincent, UK Director of Reporters Without Borders and FPC Research Fellow

Lord George Foulkes, Council of Europe General Rapporteur on media freedom and the safety of journalists

Professor Philip Leach, Director, European Human Rights Advocacy Centre

Chair: Rt Hon John Whittingdale MP, former Culture Secretary and FPC Political Council Member

Listen to an audio recording of the event here. 

March 25, 2019
25 March 2019 6pm-7.30pm

IPU (Inter-Parliamentary Union) Room, House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA (Please note this is a room change from what was originally advertised)

Anti-extremism legislation and its challenges for freedom of expression in Russia and across Europe

The Foreign Policy Centre, Article 19 and the SOVA Center for Information and Analysis are organising a joint seminar to examine Russia’s use of counter-terrorism and anti-extremism legislation, looking at how civil society and the Council of Europe are concerned that this broadly written and often arbitrarily applied legislation is being used to stifle freedom of expression and restrict access to information. The seminar will also examine how the majority ...

More info

Alexander Verkhovsky, Director of the SOVA Center for Information and Analysis in Moscow

Sarah Clarke,Head of Europe and Central Asia, ARTICLE19

Lord Anderson, the former Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation

Chair: Fiona Bruce MP, Chair of the Conservative Party Human Rights Commission

Listen to an audio recording of the event here. 

February 25, 2019
February 25, 2019, 6pm-7.30pm

Committee Room 16, House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA

Hungary and Poland: Democracy and rule of law under pressure

The Foreign Policy Centre hosted a Westminster seminar to explore the current political situation in Hungary and Poland. This event comprised an expert panel discussion and the first UK presentation of a 35 min documentary film, ‘State Capture: The story of Hungary 1988-2018’. The event examined the growing concerns about rule-of-law (including judicial freedom), media freedom, protection of minorities, commitment to democratic pluralism and the rise of oligarchic elites, with both ...

More info

Dr Gabor Scheiring, Research Fellow University of Cambridge

Dr Marcin Matczak, Associate Professor, Institute of State and Law Studies, University of Warsaw

Lyudmyla Kozlovska, President, The Open Dialogue Foundation

Chair: Alex Sobel MP

Listen to the audio recording of the event here. 

November 22, 2018
November 22, 2018 7pm-9pm

Boothroyd Room, Portcullis House, House of Commons, London,  SW1A 2LW

Saudi Arabia and Iran: The Struggle to Shape the Middle East

The Foreign Policy Centre and the Richardson Institute at Lancaster University are holding this Westminster seminar to launch and debate the findings of a new publication entitled Saudi Arabia and Iran: The Struggle to Shape the Middle East, part of the Sectarianism, Proxies and De-Sectarianisation (SEPAD) project. The event and publication will look at how since the Arab Uprisings in late 2010 and the fragmentation of regime-society relations that followed, relationships ...

More info

Fabian Hamilton MP, Shadow Minister for Peace and Disarmament

Dr Simon Mabon, Director of the Richardson Institute and SEPAD Project Leader, Lancaster University

Dr May Darwich, Assistant Professor, Durham University

Dr Edward Wastnidge, Lecturer, The Open University

Chair: Rt Hon Baroness Northover, Liberal Democrats Lead Spokesperson on Foreign Affairs- House of Lords

Listen to an audio recording of the event here.


November 13, 2018
18:00 -19:30

Committee Room 6, House of Commons, Westminster, London, SW1A 0AA

 Join our mailing list 

Keep informed about events, articles & latest publications from Foreign Policy Centre