CPJ Blog

Press Freedom News and Views

Jean-Paul Marthoz

CPJ Europe Representative Marthoz is a Belgian journalist and longtime press freedom and human rights activist. He teaches international journalism at the Université catholique de Louvain and has reported from many countries for the Brussels daily Le Soir and the quarterly Enjeux international.

Blog   |   Macedonia

Press freedom issues may keep Macedonia from EU

The European Union accession process has been hailed as the best tool in the arsenal of democracy promotion. By adhering to the acquis communautaire, the EU's total body of legislation, and to the Copenhagen criteria that define the democratic nature of the EU, candidate countries are supposed to perfect their political transition before joining "the club of European democracies."

Blog   |   Eritrea

EU resolution urges Eritrea to free long-jailed journalists

From left, European Parliament members Judith Sargentini, Charles Tannock, Ana Gomes, and Olle Schmidt call for the release of Eritrean political prisoners. (European Parliament)

Eritrea was on the hot seat Thursday in Strasbourg and Brussels. Ten years after a massive crackdown on dissent in Asmara that included the arrests of 11 independent journalists, European institutions have signalled that they are weary of President Isaias Afeworki's repression. 

September 16, 2011 5:51 PM ET

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Blog   |   France

Spying on media exposes French government's dark side

Spying on news media becomes a dark cloud over Sarkozy's government. (AFP)

"The freedom of the press and the lie of the state." The headline Thursday in the influential newspaper Le Monde was bound to make a big splash. While President Nicolas Sarkozy was basking in the glory of his Libyan intervention and celebrating the virtues of democracy, the French "paper of record" was denouncing the dark side and the dirty tricks of his government.

Blog   |   UK

Easy targets, journalists under direct fire in the UK

A photographer holds his head after he was attacked by protesters in east London on Monday. (AP/Karel Prinsloo)

The safety advisories sent out by the International News Safety Institute on Tuesday said it all: "Bring a mobile phone with emergency numbers pre-set for speed dialling; bring eye protection such as swimming goggles; carry first-aid kits and know how to use them; wear loose, natural-fabric clothing as it will not burn as readily as synthetics; and remember there is always the possibility of gasoline bombs being detonated."

Blog   |   Afghanistan, France

French ex-hostages: Press must continue in Afghanistan

Stéphane Taponier, left, and Hervé Ghesquière say they will return to work as soon as possible. (Reuters/Gonzalo Fuentes)

Stéphane Taponier and Hervé Ghesquière, the two France 3 journalists held captive by the Taliban for 547 days, had a big surprise when they entered the France Télévisions building Thursday afternoon, a few hours after landing at the military base of Villacoublay, close to Paris, where they were welcomed by President Nicolas Sarkozy. 

Blog   |   France, Uzbekistan

French news site must prove Uzbekistan is a dictatorship

AFP

When Lola Karimova, the Uzbek president's youngest daughter, decided to sue the French online newspaper Rue89 in August for libel, she wanted to restore the reputation of her country. Or did she? Her case against one of the most irreverent Paris media outlets is slowly turning into a public relations fiasco for her and the oil-producing Central Asian republic, Uzbekistan, where her father, Islam Karimov, has reigned supreme for more than two decades.

May 16, 2011 6:10 PM ET

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Blog   |   Azerbaijan, France

CPJ presses slow, cautious Council of Europe on Azerbaijan

Ilham Aliyev (AP)

Strasbourg prides itself on being the "European capital of human rights." The historic French city, located on the border with Germany, is home to the Council of Europe (CoE), a 47-member institution focused on the promotion of democracy and the rule of law. 

It is also the seat of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), whose rulings have consistently defended press freedom against abrasive judgments or abusive practices of CoE member states.

Blog   |   Belgium, France, Turkey

Paris and Brussels mobilize for Hrant Dink murder trial

People keep vigils in hopes for justice in the murder of Hrant Dink. (Reuters)

On January 19, 2007, Hrant Dink, the founder and editor-in-chief of the Armenian-Turkish weekly Agos, was gunned down in front of his office building in Istanbul. The murder sent shockwaves through the Turkish and international human rights and press freedom communities. It also triggered a mobilization of thousands of Turkish intellectuals, activists, and citizens that marched through the streets of Istanbul under banners claiming "We are all Hrant Dink."

February 11, 2011 5:03 PM ET

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Blog   |   Hungary

Hearing: Hungary undermines EU with new media law

An EU hearing elicited outrage at Hungary's repressive new media law. Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban says he's willing to reconsider the measure. (Reuters/Laszlo Balogh)

When you see the top echelon of the EU press corps--The Guardian, Die Sueddeutsche Zeitung, Le Soir, and others--gathering in front of a meeting room at the European Parliament in Brussels you know that you should follow them inside. These seasoned correspondents select their assignments with a keen sense of urgency, and when they skip the daily 12 o'clock press briefing at the European Commission you know that they mean business.

January 12, 2011 3:59 PM ET

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