In the Middle East, speaking out against authoritarian regimes comes at a high price. In the shadow of the deadly revolution in Egypt, Yaara Bou Melhem reports on Syria's hardline stance against discontent.
One 20-year-old blogger, Tal Al Mallouhi, ran three websites on which she wrote poems about freedom and social justice… she was detained by Syrian authorities and eventually accused of being a US spy.
And it’s not just young activists on the internet… Yaara also meets the son of an 80-year-old human rights campaigner, who's again behind bars for speaking out. He’s been forced to move to Europe to campaign for his father’s release.
WATCH - Hear their stories, and more on Syria’s estimated 2,000 political detainees.
EXTRA - Yaara talks to SBS Radio's World News Australia about the Syrian authorities' eagerness to restrict social networking on the internet.
BLOG LINKS - Visit Tal Al Mallouhi's blog sites and read about the campaign for her release.
WORLD NEWS AUSTRALIA - Get the latest on the unrest in the Middle East from SBS's World News Australia.
INTERACTIVE - Use our interactive feature for more analysis on the political turmoil in the region.
AWARDS - Yaara won the Walkley Young Australian Journalist of the Year Award for this report in June 2011, a UN Australia Media Peace Award in October 2011 and a Walkley Award for Excellence in Journalism in November 2011.
Photo (Syrian flag): Getty
On air: 20th February 2011