Freedom of the Press

Sudan

Sudan

Freedom of the Press 2002

2002 Scores

Press Status

Not Free

Press Freedom Score
(0 = best, 100 = worst)

87

Political Environment
(0 = best, 40 = worst)

36

Economic Environment
(0 = best, 30 = worst)

25

Despite gradual easing of press restrictions since 1997, significant controls continue during the insurgency in the South. Broadcast media are state-controlled and reflect only National Press Council views. Government harassment generates severe self-censorship by some and courageous resistance by other journalists. Three journalists were arrested in July, including Alfred Tabban, who reported for Reuters and the BBC and was board chairman of the Khartoum Monitor, the country's only English-language paper. It was suspended for three days in September after being judged "harmful" to relations between the country's north and south. Several other Monitor journalists were arrested during the year. Two other dailies, Alwan and Al-Ousboue, were banned for 24 hours in October, and the Monitor was closed down a second time for two days. Alfred Tabban was arrested for a third time this year. In November, the government lifted the ban of 12 newspapers but kept four others shut down. Thirty journalists of Al-Watan were arrested when they protested the censorship of an article on corruption. While journalists such as Amal Abbas, chief editor of an oppositionist newspaper, have become more vocal, they have been continuously harassed.