Middle East Gov'ts Tightened Media Control

February 4, 2008

According to Canoe Online, the Committee to Protect Journalists’ says that autocratic governments in the Middle East combined periodic crackdowns with cosmetic media reforms last year to maintain their control over the press.

The organization released its annual survey on world press freedom and found the following:

?Arab governments have had success in keeping independent journalists at heel by stunting media development or by chipping away at press gains through periodic crackdowns.?

?Arab governments have also manipulated the media reform process. Regimes from Egypt to Yemen touted cosmetic amendments to media laws that have long been used to control journalism.?

According to the Associated Press: "The group was also critical of conditions for Palestinian journalists who have been intimidated by both Israel and rival Palestinian groups" and "The group reported attacks against journalists by Israeli forces using tear gas and stun grenades. "


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