Freedom at Issue: Insights on the global struggle for democracy | Freedom House

Freedom at Issue:

Insights on the global struggle for democracy

Presidents tighten their grip on power

The presidents of Benin, Senegal and Guinea are all tightening their grip on power in questionable ways. Credit: Presidence Benin/GPE-Heather Shuker/DoC.

Across West Africa, several countries’ democratic reputations are under threat.

Uighur protest

A Uighur protest. Credit: langkawi via Flickr

Like its totalitarian antecedents, the Chinese regime is willing to break entire cultures in pursuit of artificial conformity.

BJP Cyber Army

An image from the BJP Cyber Army page on Facebook (@bjpcyberarmy)

Parties and candidates across the region have turned to content manipulation as a preferred campaign tactic.

Chinese students wearing headbands sit at their desks in a classroom.

Children in an elementary school in Zhejiang wear brainwave-reading headbands that reportedly monitor their attention levels in class. Credit: SupChina

Indoctrination, censorship, and surveillance are robbing a generation of their right to free thought.

People in Rwanda attend a candlelit vigil for 25th Commemoration of the 1994 Genocide. Credit: YASUYOSHI CHIBA/AFP/Getty Images.

The trend coincides with a global decline in democracy.


The Kremlin is attempting to rein in Russia’s disillusioned youth, but dissent will grow unless young people are granted an effective outlet to air their grievances to the state.

Thailand's Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-Ocha sits at a desk while speaking into a microphone.

Thailand's Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha presides over a Coronation Committee meeting. Credit: Royal Thai Government

The junta wrote the rules for the recent elections, but it doesn’t seem to like the results.

Sudan's Presidential Palace

The presidential palace in Khartoum, Sudan

Their demands are clear—a democratic Sudan under civilian leadership.

Man holds a Grumpy Cat sign protesting internet censorship in Singapore

A protester stands with a placard during a rally at a free-speech park called Speakers' Corner in Singapore. Photo Credit: ROSLAN RAHMAN/AFP/Getty Images.

The government’s new bill adds to a regional pattern of online restrictions.

Egyptian president Abdel Fattah al-Sisi makes a speech

Egyptian president Abdel Fattah al-Sisi gives a speech at a press conference. Credit: Getty Images. 

The amendments will further empower the autocratic president and military, at the expense of ordinary Egyptians.