Reports   |   Albania, Bosnia, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, Turkey

Balancing Act

Joining the club: accession and press freedom

Accession to the EU is often described as one of the most effective democracy promotion projects in the world. Countries vying for membership must prove themselves on a range of political and legal criteria that include provisions on standards for human rights, freedom of expression, and press freedom. Currently, five countries—Albania, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Turkey—are negotiating with Brussels, with Bosnia Herzegovina and Kosovo as so-called potential candidates. None has a respectable press freedom record. “They score significantly below the EU average,” notes Jennifer Dunham, project manager at the U.S.-based watchdog organization Freedom House. CPJ research has documented systemic press freedom failings, all confirmed in the European Commission’s annual progress reports, which assess the countries’ conformity with EU norms.

Blog   |   Macedonia

Press apathy over Macedonia wiretaps is symptom of failing democracy

Transcripts of alleged wiretap recordings are handed out in Skopje on February 27. Claims that journalists as well as ministers were under surveillance have highlighted press freedom conditions in Macedonia. (Reuters/Ognen Teofilovski)

Journalists and professional press organizations were given just one day's warning on February 25 that Zoran Zaev, leader of Macedonia's opposition party the Social Democrats, would be revealing what he described as a "bomb"--conversations of journalists allegedly wiretapped by the government--at his weekly press conference.

Case   |   Macedonia

Appeals court orders imprisonment of Macedonian reporter

The Skopje Court of Appeals in the capital, Skopje, on January 15, 2015, reduced Tomislav Kezarovski's prison term from four and a half years to two years, but ordered the journalist to serve the remaining time--four and a half months--in jail, according to regional and international press. Kezarovski had been serving the term under house arrest.

Alerts   |   Macedonia

Investigative journalist imprisoned in Macedonia

New York, October 24, 2013--Authorities in Macedonia should reverse on appeal the conviction of a prominent investigative journalist who has been imprisoned since May, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today.

Blog   |   Macedonia

Hopes dashed again for more press freedom in Macedonia

On June 21, Macedonian journalists, intellectuals, artists, and free thinkers breathed a sigh of relief. The U.N. special rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression, Frank La Rue, visited Skopje and held one of the most straightforward and honest press conferences on the state of freedom of the media we had seen in years. La Rue's fact-finding mission concluded that even though the Macedonian legal framework for media freedom is satisfactory, its politicized practice raises serious concerns. Here are some points the rapporteur highlighted:

Blog   |   Macedonia

Press freedom issues may keep Macedonia from EU

The European Union accession process has been hailed as the best tool in the arsenal of democracy promotion. By adhering to the acquis communautaire, the EU's total body of legislation, and to the Copenhagen criteria that define the democratic nature of the EU, candidate countries are supposed to perfect their political transition before joining "the club of European democracies."

Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Georgia, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Macedonia, Moldova, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, UK, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Yugoslavia

Attacks on the Press 2002: The Hague

December 11

Jonathan C. Randal, The Washington Post

The U.N. International War Crimes Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in The Hague (ICTY) ruled to limit compelled testimony from war correspondents. The decision, announced at the tribunal's Appeals Chamber, came in response to the appeal by former Washington Post reporter Jonathan C. Randal, who had been subpoenaed to testify in the case of former Bosnian-Serb housing minister Radoslav Brdjanin, who is facing charges of genocide because of his alleged role in the persecution and expulsion of more than 100,000 non-Serbs during the Bosnian war. The subpoena against Randal was set aside, and he is no longer required to testify.
March 31, 2003 12:06 PM ET
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