Bahrain

'Press Uncuffed' aims to free jailed journalists

Members of the media are being imprisoned in record numbers as authorities seek to silence and retaliate against critical voices covering sensitive topics such as corruption or human rights abuses. A new campaign conducted by CPJ and students at the University of Maryland's seeks to raise awareness of imprisoned journalists and call for their release.

Journalists in prison
China is world's worst jailer

Impact   |   Azerbaijan, Bahrain, China, Cuba, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Iran, Latvia, Myanmar, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Vietnam

News from the Committee to Protect Journalists, April 2015

CPJ launches annual publication Attacks on the Press


At a U.N. press conference on April 27 to launch CPJ's annual publication Attacks on the Press, CPJ Executive Director Joel Simon called on the U.N. Security Council to include in its May 27 debate on Journalist Safety a warning to states that they should not use national security as an excuse to jail, harass, or censor journalists.

The last three years have been the most deadly for the press, according to CPJ research. One of the reasons is the developing "terror dynamic"--non-state actors targeting journalists with violence while governments restrict civil liberties and press freedom in response. This phenomenon was amply documented in essays published in this year's edition of Attacks on the Press.

The book, which emphasizes reporting and analysis by CPJ staff and outside experts, features essays on multiple threats facing the press: the conflict in Syria, where freelancers and local journalists must adapt to an environment in which they are targets; terror and criminal groups, in countries as Syria, Nigeria, and Mexico, which document their own atrocities and disseminate them through social media; and crackdowns on the press in Ethiopia and Egypt, where governments use the threat of terror to justify repression. Several essays in the book also look at the impact of surveillance in more democratic societies, including those in Europe. The book also includes CPJ's list of the 10 Most Censored Countries.

The print edition of Attacks on the Press is published by Bloomberg Press, an imprint of Wiley, and is available for purchase.

May 7, 2015 4:24 PM ET

Blog   |   Bahrain

Glitz of Formula One must not divert attention from Bahrain's jailed journalists

The Formula One track, above, in Bahrain is a source of national pride but a short drive from the spectacle of race day is the overcrowded Jaw Prison. (AFP/Tom Gandolfini)

When the Bahrain International Circuit (BIC) hosted Formula One for the first time in 2004, it was nearly a false start for the $150 million facility. Drivers told the BBC they feared desert sand would damage their racecars. So track employees began a perpetual fight against nature, even spraying glue over the surrounding desert in the hope of keeping it at bay.

Alerts   |   Bahrain

Four Bahraini journalists stripped of citizenship

Washington D.C. February 4, 2015--Bahraini authorities revoked the nationality of at least four journalists among a total of 72 citizens, after accusing them under article 10 of the country's citizenship act of supporting terrorism, the state-run Bahrain News Agency reported.

Reports   |   Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belarus, Cameroon, Cuba, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, India, Iran, Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory, Mexico, Myanmar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Swaziland, Syria, Thailand, Turkey, Uzbekistan, Vietnam

China is world's worst jailer of the press; global tally second worst on record

More than 200 journalists are imprisoned for their work for the third consecutive year, reflecting a global surge in authoritarianism. China is the world’s worst jailer of journalists in 2014. A CPJ special report by Shazdeh Omari

An Egyptian protester calls for the release of freelance photographer Mahmoud Abou Zeid, also known as Shawkan, who has been imprisoned since August 2013. (AP/Amr Nabil)

Blog   |   Bahrain

CPJ signs joint letter to Bahrain calling for Ahmed Humaidan's release

A Bahraini boy holds a sign protesting the December 2012 arrest of freelance photographer Ahmed Humaidan. (AFP/Mohammed al-Shaikh)

Today, CPJ joined 10 local and international organizations in sending an open letter calling on King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa and the Bahraini government to release photojournalist Ahmed Humaidan and dismiss all charges against him. The letter calls on the government to fulfill Bahrain's obligations under international law and its commitments under the 2012 Universal Periodic Review by the U.N. Human Rights Council.

August 29, 2014 2:00 PM ET

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Alerts   |   Bahrain

Bahrain court should overturn Ahmed Humaidan's conviction

Bahraini photographers hold up placards in solidarity with freelance photojournalist Ahmed Humaidan, who was sentenced to 10 years in prison. (AFP/Mohammed al-Shaikh)

New York, August 22, 2014 -- The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on the Bahrain High Court of Appeals to overturn the baseless conviction of freelance photojournalist Ahmed Humaidan. The court is expected to rule on Humaidan's appeal on August 25, according to news reports.

Reports   |   Azerbaijan, Bahrain, China, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Iran, Turkey, Uzbekistan, Vietnam

Ten journalists to free from prison

On World Press Freedom Day,
CPJ calls for the release of all jailed journalists

Al-Jazeera journalist Peter Greste is in prison in Egypt on charges of supporting the Muslim Brotherhood. (AFP/Khaled Desouki)

By Shazdeh Omari/CPJ News Editor

New York, April 29, 2014—Uzbek editor Muhammad Bekjanov has been in jail for 15 years, one of the longest imprisonments of journalists worldwide. Prominent Iranian journalist Siamak Ghaderi was imprisoned in 2010 and has been beaten and whipped in custody. Vietnamese blogger Nguyen Van Hai, serving a 12-year jail term, could barely walk or talk during a prison visit in July 2013, his family said.

Press Releases   |   Bahrain

Bahrain Racing in Circles

Press freedom campaign launch timed to Formula One race in Bahrain

New York and Paris, April 3, 2014--The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) and Reporters Without Borders (RSF) have launched a joint social media campaign calling on the Bahraini government to allow journalists to work freely during the Formula One Grand Prix race in Bahrain on April 6, 2014. Using the social media tool Thunderclap, the "Bahrain Racing in Circles" campaign participants will call for press freedom in Bahrain at the exact start of the Formula One race. As of April 3, the campaign had gained a potential audience of nearly 3 million people, more than twice the population of Bahrain.

April 3, 2014 4:39 PM ET

Alerts   |   Bahrain

Freelance Bahraini photographer given 10-year prison term

A Bahraini boy holds a sign protesting the December 2012 arrest of freelance photographer Ahmed Humaidan. (AFP/Mohammed al-Shaikh)

New York, March 26, 2014--Today's conviction of freelance photographer Ahmed Humaidan is an attempt by Bahraini authorities to censor independent and dissident voices in the lead-up to the Formula One race in April, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. Humaidan, who has been imprisoned since December 2012, was sentenced to 10 years in jail, according to news reports. 

Blog   |   Bahrain

Bahrain racing in circles

Anti-government protesters take cover from teargas fired by riot police in the village of Daih on March 3. (Reuters/Hamad I Mohammed)

Thursday, the official Bahrain News Agency announced the "final 30-day countdown [to] the Formula One extravaganza" to take place the first week of April. Every year the race acts as a lightning rod for criticism of the Bahraini government, which seeks to use high-profile international events like the F1 to gloss over human rights violations in the country.

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