News / Asia

Media Monitor Issues Warning on Press Freedom

Activists wearing masks pretent to read newspapers upside down during a silent protest to support freedom of the press, outside a shopping mall in Kuala Lumpur (File Photo)
Activists wearing masks pretent to read newspapers upside down during a silent protest to support freedom of the press, outside a shopping mall in Kuala Lumpur (File Photo)

Multimedia

Audio

Rwanda, Yemen and Syria have joined Burma, North Korea and Eritrea in the group of the world's worst abusers of the media, according to Reporter's Without Borders 2010 Press Freedom Index.

Reporters Without Borders says press freedom is getting worse in the 10 countries at the bottom of its index. It says it is becoming hard to tell which country has the most problems, because all are persecuting the media and blocking news and information to their citizens.

Rwanda is cited as one of the 10 worst offenders, according to the report. The research director at the media watchdog, Gilles Lordet, says Rwanda's government cracked down on the media earlier this year during the country's election.

"We had a journalist who had been killed this year. Several journalists have been put in jail," said Lordet. "Newspapers and internet sites have been closed and journalists have been forced to flee the country to take shelter in neighboring countries. And we see that it was directly orchestrated by the president, Paul Kagame."

Saozig Dollet, Reporters Without Borders, discusses media freedom in the Middle East:

Rwanda's government has repeatedly denied allegations it abuses press freedom. The government says it is important for security in the country that the media is not free to incite violence.

China is also on the list. The report calls for the Chinese government to free Liu Xiaobo, a human-rights campaigner who just won the Nobel Peace Prize and is imprisoned in China.

But Lordet says in one respect the situation in China is not as bad as the other countries at the bottom of the index.

"We are seeing more and more mobilization of bloggers, people active on the internet," added Lordet. "The journalists and people who work for information on the internet start to be very, very active."

Asia's four communist countries come in the bottom 15 of the report's list: North Korea comes in second to last, after Eritrea.

Lordet says another Horn of Africa country, Somalia, is among the 20 worst offenders.

"I think about Somalia, about the press and about the journalists in Somalia, we are a bit desperate because it is a war and it is a very chaotic war," said Lordet. "There is a very, very big problem of protection of journalists and I would say that for the time being it seems impossible to solve."

The Reporters Without Borders' Press Freedom Index was first published in 2002. It ranks 178 countries. Six northern European countries - Finland, Iceland, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland - have topped the index since it was created in 2002. This year, for the first time, Cuba did not come in the lowest 10.

You May Like

Video On The Scene: In Gaza, Darkness Brings Dread and Death

Palestinians fear nighttime bombardment, VOA correspondent finds More

African Small Farmers Could Be Key to Ending Food Insecurity

Experts say providing access to microloans, crop insurance, better storage facilities, irrigation, road systems and market information could enable greater production More

University of Michigan Wins Solar Car Race

Squad guided its student-designed solar-powered vehicle to fifth consecutive time victory in eight-day bi-annual American Solar Challenge More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
X
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
Video

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid