Chinese government media controls are increasingly constraining news outlets based outside China. This is the key finding of a report released today, authored by Freedom House research analyst Sarah Cook and published by the Center for International Media Assistance at the National Endowment for Democracy.
Freedom House is pleased to welcome Askat Dukenbaev as the Project Director for a new 3-year human rights program in Kyrgyzstan to promote access to justice, protection of vulnerable populations, and policy reform. The “Strengthening Human Rights in Kyrgyzstan” project aims to reinvigorate civil society and increase the government’s political will to adhere to its human rights commitments. Through human rights schools, support for key human rights initiatives, rapid response grants, policy forums, and advocacy, Freedom House will strive to ensure that human rights are respected by educating the public and enabling civil society to engage with the government of Kyrgyzstan to secure respect and protection for human rights
Freedom House welcomes the announcement Wednesday, October 9th that the U.S. government is cutting off some aid to the Egyptian government, and urges the U.S. government not to resume this aid, and to consider limiting government-to-government assistance further, until the Egyptian military takes irreversible steps to return Egypt to a democratically-elected civilian government and address its intensifying human rights abuses.
Restrictions on free expression and assembly and reports of ballot stuffing and vote fraud have undermined the credibility of Azerbaijan’s presidential elections. Freedom House calls on the European Union to prioritize human rights and democracy in Azerbaijan at the Eastern Partnership Summit that will take place in November 2013 in Vilnius, and suspend negotiations on visa facilitation for Azerbaijani government officials.
Freedom House is alarmed by a concerted online campaign apparently aimed at discrediting Oksana Romaniuk, a prominent freedom of expression activist in Ukraine, and the Institute for Mass Information (IMI), where she recently became the director. The targeting of Romaniuk is only the latest in a pattern of efforts to discredit journalists and manipulate the media in Ukraine.
Broad surveillance, new laws controlling web content, and growing arrests of social-media users drove a worldwide decline in internet freedom in the past year, according to a new study released today by Freedom House. Nonetheless, Freedom on the Net 2013 also found that activists are becoming more effective at raising awareness of emerging threats and, in several cases, have helped forestall new repressive measures.
Freedom House is deeply concerned about a new wave of discriminatory bills against LGBTI rights in Kazakhstan and Russia, as parliaments in both countries have proposed new draconian restrictions on the rights of LGBTI people.