Debate began in Parliament Wednesday on a draft law that would empower citizens to request information from all public bodies. The law was drafted in 2009, but had been overlooked in Parliament until new lobbying efforts led West Bekaa MP Robert Ghanem to put the issue on the agenda of the Administration and Justice Committee. Under the bill anybody would have the right to request data held by public bodies, including judicial courts and private institutions in charge of running public utilities, government-linked corporations and other associations that deal with issues of public interest. There are exceptions for, among other things, information regarding national security and individual privacy. [Link]