Europe

For decades Europe has maintained an exemplary level of respect for democratic standards and human rights, and has generally continued to do so in recent years despite serious economic turmoil. Nevertheless, many countries have developed problems related to their treatment of immigrants and minorities, and press freedom faces threats in a number of states. In addition, several countries in the Balkans are still consolidating their democratic institutions and will require further monitoring to ensure continued progress. Through its presence in Brussels, Freedom House works to address these issues and to increase Europe’s role in supporting the spread of democracy abroad.

Asterisks in the country list below indicate a territory rather than a country.

Countries & Territories: 44
620 million people
86% free
Press:
66% free

Percent computed by population. Population source data.

News & Updates

Populist victories in the United Kingdom and the United States have shaken the post-Cold War order and increased fears of instability in Europe and Eurasia, according to Nations in Transit 2017, the 22nd edition of Freedom House’s annual report on democracy in Central and Eastern Europe, the Balkans, and Eurasia.

Freedom House issued the following statement in response to the Hungarian government’s legislation targeting Budapest’s Central European University for closure.

Francišak Viačorka of the Belarusian Institute of America explains the context of the ongoing antigovernment demonstrations—and offers advice on how the international community should respond.

Authorities in Minsk have indiscriminately detained hundreds of marchers on Freedom Day in Belarus. 

Pages

Experts

Senior Researcher, Nations in Transit

Zselyke Csaky is a senior researcher for Nations in Transit, Freedom House’s annual survey of democratic governance from Central Europe to Eurasia.

Issues: 
Regions: 
Senior Director, Global Publications

Sarah Repucci leads Freedom House’s flagship Freedom in the World and Freedom of the Press publications.

Regions: 
Director, Europe and Eurasia programs

Marc Behrendt is the Director for Europe and Eurasia programs at Freedom House, with over 20 years of experience working in the Eurasia region in peacebuilding, governance and human rights.

Regions: 
2.8 million people
Press:
Partly Free
Status
Partly Free
Scores Overview
3.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
8.5 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
11 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
3.8 million people
Press:
Partly Free
Status
Partly Free
Scores Overview
3.5 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
7.2 million people
Press:
Partly Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
2.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
4.3 million people
Press:
Partly Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.5 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
1.2 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
10 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
5.6 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
1.3 million people
Internet:
Free
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
8
(0 = Best, 100 = Worst) / 100 (least free)
Internet Freedom
5.4 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
64 million people
Internet:
Free
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
20
(0 = Best, 100 = Worst) / 100 (least free)
Internet Freedom
82 million people
Internet:
Free
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
17
(0 = Best, 100 = Worst) / 100 (least free)
Internet Freedom
11 million people
Press:
Partly Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
2.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
9.9 million people
Internet:
Free
Press:
Partly Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
2.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
24
(0 = Best, 100 = Worst) / 100 (least free)
Internet Freedom
320 thousand people
Internet:
Free
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
6
(0 = Best, 100 = Worst) / 100 (least free)
Internet Freedom
4.7 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
61 million people
Internet:
Free
Press:
Partly Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
22
(0 = Best, 100 = Worst) / 100 (least free)
Internet Freedom
2.3 million people
Press:
Partly Free
Status
Partly Free
Scores Overview
3.5 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
2 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
2.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
3.2 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
2.1 million people
Press:
Partly Free
Status
Partly Free
Scores Overview
3.5 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
399 thousand people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
622 thousand people
Press:
Partly Free
Status
Partly Free
Scores Overview
3.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
17 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
5 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
38 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
11 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
21 million people
Press:
Partly Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
2.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
7.1 million people
Press:
Partly Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
2.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
5.4 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
2.1 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
46 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
9.5 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
8 million people
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
75 million people
Internet:
Partly Free
Press:
Not Free
Status
Partly Free
Scores Overview
3.5 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
55
(0 = Best, 100 = Worst) / 100 (least free)
Internet Freedom
63 million people
Internet:
Free
Press:
Free
Status
Free
Scores Overview
1.0 / 7 (least free)
Freedom Rating
24
(0 = Best, 100 = Worst) / 100 (least free)
Internet Freedom
Scores Overview

Countries We're Watching

Iraqi Kurdistan was last assessed by Freedom in the World in 2004. Please see Iraq for more recent data...

French Polynesia is not assessed separately by Freedom House. Please see France.

New Caledonia is not assessed separately by Freedom House. Please see France.

OIC

West Papua was last assessed separately in the 2004 edition of Freedom in the World. Please see...

Freedom of the Press 2017

...

ch

For decades Europe has maintained an exemplary level of respect for democratic standards and human rights, and has generally continued to do so in...

OAS

Freedom in the World 2017

...

Countries at the Crossroads, published from 2004 to 2012, was an annual analysis of government performance in 70 strategically...

PAN

Despite being home to several of the world’s worst performing countries in terms of respect for human rights, the region saw overall if...

French Guiana is not assessed separately by Freedom House. Please see France.

Freedom of the Press last assessed the Israeli-Occupied Territories and Palestinian Authority as such in its 2011 edition. For a complete...

un
IGF
AFP
CNN

Serbia and Montenegro was last assessed as such in the 2006 editions of Freedom in the World and Freedom of the Press. For more recent data,...

Northern Ireland was last assessed separately in the 2004 edition of Freedom in the World. Please see United...

Reunion is not assessed separately by Freedom House. Please see France.

DPP
ICC

The Americas are second only to Western Europe in levels of freedom and respect for human rights.  Nonetheless, a rise in violent crime and...

ITU

A monthly update of press freedom news and analysis related to China

Freedom...

Northern Ireland was last assessed separately in the 2004 edition of Freedom in the World. Please see...

NGO
=
UAE

Since 2011, Freedom House has rated Mexico “Not Free” in its annual Freedom of the Press report primarily because of ongoing violence against...

KMT

<p>Macao was last assessed separately in the 2004 edition of Freedom in the World. Please see <a href="/country/china">China...

The Mark Palmer Forum for the Advancement of Democracy honors the legacy of Ambassador Mark Palmer, long-time Freedom House...

The Falkland Islands are not assessed separately by Freedom House. Please see United Kingdom.

Freedom in the World last assessed the Palestinian Authority–Administered Territories as such in its 2010 edition. For a complete...

Freedom in the World began assessing the West Bank as a separate territory in its 2011 edition. For a complete explanation of the changes...

Chechnya was last assessed separately in the 2009 edition of Freedom in the World. Please see...

UN
AKP
EU
ISI
GNC

Macao was last assessed separately in the 2004 edition of Freedom in the World. Please see China...

Freedom of the Press began assessing the West Bank and Gaza Strip as such in its 2012 edition. For a complete explanation of the changes...

oil
STT
MTN

Over the past five years, the Asia-Pacific region has been the only one to record steady gains in political rights and civil liberties as measured...

Over the past few years, many of Freedom House’s publications, including Freedom in the...

LRA

Before the 2010 edition, Freedom in the World assessed Kosovo as a disputed territory. For the older Freedom in the World...

Freedom House’s innovative publication, Women’s Rights in the Middle East and North Africa, analyzes the status of women in the region...

KCK

The West Bank and Gaza Strip have been covered in different ways by Freedom House surveys over the years, as indicated below. In some cases they...

Greenland is not assessed separately by Freedom House. Please see Denmark.


For several years Freedom House has worked with human rights defenders and civic activists in Belarus to...


WHAT DOES NATIONS IN TRANSIT MEASURE?

The Nations in Transit annual...

IMF

The Arab Spring of 2011 launched an era of sweeping political changes in the countries of the Middle East and North Africa, which has historically...

S
IFJ

West Papua was last assessed separately in the 2004 edition of Freedom in the World. Please see Indonesia for...

Yugoslavia was last assessed as such in the 2003 editions of Freedom in the World, Freedom of the Press, and Nations in Transit. For subsequent...

M23