Spoiler: Today, 3rd of May, is World Press Freedom Day 2022. Press freedom is under duress in many countries and journalists are being harassed, jailed and killed by authoritarian regimes.It’s not getting better. It’s getting worse.
And Russia is among the worst places to be a journalist. From the web site of Reporters Without Borders:
“The situation is classified as “very bad” in a record number of 28 countries in this year’s Index, while 12 countries, including Belarus (153rd) and Russia (155th), are on the Index’s red list (indicating “very bad” press freedom situations) on the map. The world’s 10 worst countries for press freedom include Myanmar (176th), where the February 2021 coup d’état set press freedom back by 10 years, as well as China, Turkmenistan (177th), Iran (178th), Eritrea (179th) and North Korea (180th).”
Following Putin’s war against Ukraine, he also extends his war against the free press in Ukraine. His orcs are abducting, arresting, murdering and torturing journalists inside Ukraine. The situation for the media in Russia is approaching the situation in North Korea.
Russia is now the worst country in Europe. Putin’s hard efforts in oppressing the media have been a success. Russia has now become worse than Belarus, c.f. Figure 1.
Figure 1. Press Freedom Rank in Europe 2021
In last year’s index, Russia was ranked 150/180 and Belarus 158/180. This year shows that Russia is ranked 155/180 while Belarus is ranked 153/180. Belarus’ lower rank doesn’t mean that the situation in the country has improved. It is the result of press and media situations it other countries deteriorating even worse.
As I wrote in many posts about Russia, Putin began his destruction of Russia by attacking the media. There are very few media that can be considered as independent and not subject to interventions by the Kremlin now, c.f. Figure 2.
Figure 2. Censorship of the media in Russia.
Source: https://www.v-dem.net/data_analysis/CountryGraph/ The index ranges from 0 to 4 where 0 indicates that the Governments’ attempts to censor the media are direct and routine. An index value of 4 indicates a situation where such behaviour is absent and attempts to do so are punished.
Putin also attacks the media outside of Russia. Following the psychopath’s war against Ukraine, Russian troops are targeting journalists inside Ukraine. Abductions, arrests, murders and torture are Putin’s methods to silence reporting about his war crimes.
Reporting about the truth of Putin’s war against Ukraine is now a crime in Russia.
”The Russian authorities have begun using arrests, raids and fines to harass journalists accused of publishing “false information” about the Russian army’s actions in Ukraine.”
According to the Press Freedom Index, the situation for the media in 2021 in Russia was still better than in North Korea, c.f. Figure 3.
Figure 3. Countries ranked worse than Russia.
But for how long?