News / Africa

Record Number of Journalists Are Jailed in 2012

Turkey tops CPJ list with 49 jailed journalists.
Turkey tops CPJ list with 49 jailed journalists.

Multimedia

Audio
Joe DeCapua
A record number of journalists were imprisoned in 2012, and there are concerns it could be even worse in the New Year. The Committee to Protect Journalists has released its annual report listing the top jailers of members of the media.


CPJ’s Mohamed Keita says attacks on the press have steadily grown.

“232 journalists were jailed in 27 nations around the world as of December 1st, 2012, surpassing the 1996 record of 185. And out of all these journalists, only three were international journalists. The vast majority were local journalists,” he said.

Keita called it an “alarming trend” that began with the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.

“In our analysis, we’ve seen that terrorism, treason and subversion were the most common charges and allegations used by governments, such as Turkey, Iran, China to jail journalists. Anti-state charges and terrorist labels have just become the preferred means that many governments use to intimidate and detain journalists and critical reporters,” he said.

The CPJ reported Turkey as the top offender with 49 imprisoned journalists, followed by Iran with 45 and China with 32. Eritrea, Syria, Vietnam, Azerbaijan, Ethiopia, Saudi Arabia and Uzbekistan round out the top 10.

Keita said, “In Africa, Ethiopia is a prime example of a nation that is using a very vaguely worded anti-terrorism law to jail and prosecute critical journalists and dissidents.”

Ethiopia is eighth on the list with six imprisoned journalists. Its neighbor, Eritrea, has jailed 28 journalists.

“Eritrea shares the distinction with Syria as the two nations in the world with the most inhuman treatment of journalists in prison – in that the journalists are thrown in jail without charge, without access to courts, without access to their families or the outside world,” he said.

In effect, he said, they simply disappear. The Committee to Protect Journalists official said international pressure needs to be placed on some governments to end their assault on the media. The most important thing, added Keita, is to ensure these journalists are not forgotten.

You May Like

India PM Modi's Party Distances Itself From Religious Conversions

BJP under fire for being slow to rein in hardline affiliate groups allegedly trying to promote Hindu-dominant agenda by luring Muslims and Christians to convert More

Anti-Whaling Group Found in Contempt of Court

Radical environmentalists who threw acid and smoke bombs at Japanese whalers in the waters off Antarctica continue their campaign to disrupt Japan's annual whale hunt More

UN's Ban Urges End to Discrimination Against Ebola Workers

Ban was speaking in Guinea on the second day of a whistle-stop tour aimed at thanking healthcare workers of the countries at the heart of the epidemic More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubansi
X
Sharon Behn
December 19, 2014 9:34 PM
For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubans

For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video Three Cities Bid for Future Obama Presidential Library

President Barack Obama still has two years left in his term in office, but the effort to establish his post-presidential library is already underway. The bid for the Obama Presidential Library is down to four locations in three states -- New York, Hawaii, and Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, each of them played an important part in the president’s life before he reached the White House.
Video

Video Cuba Deal is Major Victory for Pope’s Diplomatic Initiatives

Pope Francis played a key role in brokering the US-Cuba deal that was made public earlier this week. It is the most stunning success so far in a series of peacemaking efforts by the pontiff. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video Fears of More Political Gridlock in 2015

2014 proved to be a difficult year politically for President Barack Obama and a very good year for the U.S. Republican Party. Republican gains in the November midterm elections gave them control of the Senate and House of Representatives for the next two years -- setting the stage for more confrontation and gridlock in the final two years of the Obama presidency. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone has a preview from Washington.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.

All About America

AppleAndroid