Freedom of the Press

Mongolia

Mongolia

Freedom of the Press 2003

2003 Scores

Press Status

Partly Free

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

36

Political Environment
(0 = best, 40 = worst)

11

Economic Environment
(0 = best, 30 = worst)

14

The government generally respects press freedom, which is provided for in the constitution. A 1998 media law bans the censorship of public information and also requires authorities to privatize all media. However, this latter provision had not yet been implemented by year's end, and some broadcast media remain under state control. Libel is a criminal offense, and the law places the burden of proof on defendants in defamation cases. In August, an editor was sentenced to one year's imprisonment for publishing false information. Mongolian media offer a range of independent and party views that often are critical of the government, but some outlets practice self-censorship. The press claims that there is indirect censorship through frequent government libel lawsuits and tax audits following critical articles. In addition, lack of access to information continues to hamper investigative journalism.