News | Freedom House


The latest from Freedom House:

This week and next, 193 governments are gathering in Dubai to consider putting the internet under a new regulatory structure that could fundamentally change the way the web works, with dire consequences for global internet freedom.

On the third anniversary of the unjust detention of U.S. contractor Alan Gross, Freedom House reiterates its call for his immediate and unconditional release.

December 7 will mark the death of press freedom in Argentina, if the country’s largest media conglomerate, Grupo Clarín, is to be believed. That date is the deadline by which Clarín must divest many of its assets or see them forcibly auctioned off in accordance with a 2009 media law. As in much of Latin America, Argentine media are controlled by a relatively small collection of private owners, and the law aimed to open the media landscape to a greater diversity of voices by limiting the number of licenses a single company can hold. However, Grupo Clarín and free speech advocates have argued that the government-backed legislation violates property rights and threatens freedom of the press. Given the contentious relationship between Clarín and the government, the group insists it is being unfairly targeted for political reasons.

Bahrain's allies, including the United States, need to make clear to the ruling Al Khalifa family that the status quo is unsustainable in the country, observes Sarah Trister in a Jerusalem Post op-ed.

Freedom House expresses concern with the deteriorating health of Iranian human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh, and calls on Iranian officials, in particular Jafari-Dowlatabadi, the Public Prosecutor General for Tehran, to end the unjust imprisonment of Sotoudeh, cease its harassment of her family, and allow her immediate access to medical care.

Mexico has become one of the most dangerous countries in the world for journalists. As organized crime, drug-trafficking and corruption continue to rise, there has been a spike in murders of journalists who have sought to draw attention to these issues. Since 2000 more than 82 journalists have been killed, and a high number have been kidnapped or disappeared, as a result of their work. Vulnerable journalists, who are increasingly being targeted by drug cartels, have nowhere to turn for help, as government authorities are often incapable or unwilling to protect them, and are sometimes even complicit in the attacks. These factors have instilled a culture of fear among journalists that has resulted in mass self-censorship.