Norway tops Press Freedom Index

Norway, the other Nordic countries and Ireland top the eighth annual world press freedom index compiled by Reporters Without Borders, based on input from hundreds of journalists and media experts around the world.

Reporters Without Borders compiles the index every year on the basis of questionnaires that are completed by hundreds of journalists and media experts around the world. This year’s index reflects press freedom violations that took place between Sept. 1, 2008 and Aug. 31, 2009.

“Press freedom must be defended everywhere in the world with the same energy and the same insistence,” Reporters Without Borders secretary-general Jean-François Julliard said today as his organisation issued its eighth annual world press freedom index.

The US which last year ranked 40th, has this year moved up to 20th place. Israel has dropped to 93rd place, following its clamp-down on the press during last winter’s Gaza war.

“It is disturbing to see European democracies such as France, Italy and Slovakia fall steadily in the rankings year after year,” Julliard said. “Europe should be setting an example as regards civil liberties. How can you condemn human rights violations abroad if you do not behave irreproachably at home? The Obama effect, which has enabled the United States to recover 20 places in the index, is not enough to reassure us,” he continued.

Read more: Rsf.org

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