Bulgaria Improves Ranking in Freedom House Report on Press Freedom

Domestic | April 30, 2015, Thursday // 10:56|  views

Photo: Freedom House

Press freedom in Bulgaria has reached its highest level over the past ten years.

This has been the conclusion drawn following the Freedom House Press Freedom report published Wednesday.

Meanwhile, merely 14% of the world population has been reported to live in countries with truly active and free press, 42% of states across the world enjoy partial press freedom, and an overwhelming 44% are not free in terms of media objectivity.

Europe remains in the top position with 86% of press freedom, then followed by North and South America.

According to the report, the main reason for the overall negative picture across the world could be attributed to two main factors - legislative amendments passed by local government that have been aiming at restricting media freedom and are most often connected to issues of national security, and restriction of the access of journalists to conflict zones.

Additionally, a number of countries with good overall scores throughout the years have demonstrated a decline in the free press ranking. Greece has dropped by 21 points since the year 2010. A further negative tendency can be observed in Turkey, Hungary and Serbia, while Bulgaria took the 75th spot.

''One of the most alarming tendencies that we saw in Bulgaria is the concentration of media ownership, especially that of ''New Bulgarian Media Group'', especially having in mind that the owner is an MP in Parliament, who is a known supporter of the ruling party in the country,'' stated researcher Ellen Aghekyan in an interview for the Bulgarian National Radio.

She further noted that Bulgaria has registered an improvement since there were fewer attacks on journalists reported in 2014 as compared to 2013. As a result the country has registered an improvement, as it scored 38 points in 2014, as compared to 39 in 2014.

Meanwhile, Belarus, Cuba, Syria, Iran, North Korea and Crimea were on the bottom of the index. Additionally, the US has also registered a slightly worsened situation following the Ferguson turmoil.

Norway and Sweden, on the other hand, have showed the best scores in terms of media freedom.

The conclusions made by the index of Reporters Without Borders in terms of press freedom and level of informedness of the population are quite similar. In the latest report, Bulgaria has dropped by 6 spots, landing on the 106th position.

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Tags: Bulgaria, ranking, media, press, freedom, improvement, europe, US, Ellen Aghekyan, turkey, Hungary, Serbia


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