Features & Analysis

  

After a harrowing escape, a family of Afghan journalists prepares for a new life in the US

The day Kabul fell to the Taliban, was the “end of the line for us as journalists,” said Shiraz Noorani. That day, August 15, 2021, was when the Nooranis, a family of five current and former Afghan journalists, decided to flee the country. Four months later, four of the Nooranis — siblings Shiraz, Ghazal, and…

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CPJ joins call urging Polish president to veto media bill

The Committee to Protect Journalists today joined 16 other media and press freedom organizations in a letter calling on Polish President Andrzej Duda to veto an amendment to the country’s broadcast media law. The letter states that the amendment “poses a fundamental threat to media freedom and pluralism in Poland,” and calls it a “direct…

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In Middle East and North Africa, a drop in attacks on journalists belies dire state of press freedom

The Middle East and North Africa region has long been especially dangerous for journalists. The Committee to Protect Journalists’ research has found that one out of every three reporters killed worldwide in retaliation for their work since 1992 — 477 out of 1,422, or 33.5% – were located in the region. That proportion rose to…

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Hungary’s Szabolcs Panyi on how Pegasus surveillance has hindered his reporting

It took five months for Hungary to acknowledge publicly that it had bought the Pegasus spyware allegedly used to hack the phones of hundreds around the world. In November, Lajos Kósa, a top official from Hungary’s ruling Fidesz party, acknowledged the purchase in a media interview after a parliamentary meeting; Minister of the Interior Sándor…

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In Benin, growing fears over law that can jail journalists for posting news online

Posting on Facebook from Benin’s Central Office for Repression of Cybercrime on November 18, journalist Patrice Gbaguidi wrote that authorities had summoned him for a second time in two weeks over a defamation complaint about one of his articles. That day, he and Hervé Alladé, the owner of Le Soleil Bénin Infos newspaper where Gbaguidi…

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For families of Al-Jazeera journalists jailed in Egypt, an agonizing choice

When Al-Jazeera journalists Mohamed Said Fahmy, Hisham Abdelaziz, and Bahaa Eldin Ibrahim Neamatalla were arrested on terrorism charges in Egypt between 2018 and 2020, their families decided to keep quiet about their detention. They feared that public attention would backfire, leading Egyptian authorities to prolong their relatives’ time in custody or worsen their prison conditions.  …

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Ethiopia’s civil war dashes once-high hopes of press freedom

In a Facebook post at the end of October, Awlo Media Center, an Ethiopian online news outlet critical of  Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s administration, announced that the government’s “pressure and obstruction” had forced it to shut down and lay off all of its employees.   The closure came after a number of Awlo Media Center journalists…

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‘Taken into a cage’: Hong Kong’s sad media milestone

The year 2021 marks a sad milestone in Hong Kong. For the first time journalists in the former British colony appear on CPJ’s annual survey of journalists unjustly imprisoned for their work. Eight. Zero to eight in one year. I first visited Hong Kong nearly 50 years ago as a student and returned to live…

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How Myanmar became the world’s second-worst jailer of journalists

Myanmar has catapulted in the rankings of the Committee to Protect Journalists’ annual census of jailed journalists, the repressive upshot of a democracy-suspending February 1 coup that saw authorities suppress news coverage of their harsh clampdown on anti-military protesters. At least 26 journalists were imprisoned in Myanmar for their reporting as of December 1, compared with…

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In Belarus, Lukashenko’s vindictiveness reaches new heights

On May 23, Belarusian authorities caused a global outcry when they diverted a Lithuania-bound commercial flight to the Belarus capital of Minsk so they could arrest two passengers on the plane: self-exiled journalist Raman Pratasevich and his girlfriend Sofia Sapega. This shocking tactic was seen as emblematic of just how far President Aleksandr Lukashenko is…

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