Freedom of the Press



Freedom of the Press 2003

2003 Scores

Press Status

Not Free

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


Political Environment
(0 = best, 40 = worst)


Economic Environment
(0 = best, 30 = worst)


Despite constitutional protection, the government often restricts freedom of speech. Slander is prohibited, and other laws that prohibit the dissemination of "false information" and regulate the publication of newspapers have been used against the independent press. Although private publications are generally allowed to circulate freely and provide some criticism of official policies, many journalists exercise self-censorship. The state owns and closely controls all electronic media as well as the country's principal newspaper, La Nation, and coverage favors the government. Djibouti and the United States in 2002 agreed to set up radio relay stations in Djibouti to broadcast Arabic radio programs of the Voice of America.