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Blog   |   Ethiopia

'They wanted me to say I was wrong': Freed Ethiopian journalist on why 1,500 days in jail failed to silence her

Reeyot Alemu embraces Al-Jazeera journalist Mohamed Fahmy at CPJ's 2015 International Press Freedom Awards. Both were freed from prison last year. (Getty Images/Michael Nagle)

Reeyot Alemu, an Ethiopian journalist who worked for the independent weekly Feteh, spent almost 1,500 days in prison after being arrested in June 2011 and charged with terrorism in 2012. She was released unexpectedly in July.

January 7, 2016 3:24 PM ET

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Blog   |   Bangladesh, France, Iraq, Pakistan, Somalia, Syria, Turkey

From Charlie Hebdo in Paris to bloggers in Bangladesh, extremists target press

Thursday marks one year since two gunmen burst into the Paris offices of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo and opened fire. Over the following year, CPJ documented the deaths of 28 journalists who were killed for their work by Islamic militant groups such as Islamic State and Al-Qaeda. This StoryMap charts the deadly attacks that took place in eight countries in 2015.

Blog   |   Nigeria

CPJ joins call for Nigeria to drop anti-social media legislation

The Committee to Protect Journalists alongside 19 Nigerian, African and international organisations today signed an open letter addressed to the upper chamber of Nigeria's parliament calling for the rejection of a bill which would undermine press freedom, stifle public opinion, and criminalize freedom of expression in Nigeria.

December 16, 2015 2:24 PM ET

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Blog   |   Tanzania

Tanzania's press wait to see if new president will reform troubling media laws

Tanzania's new president, John Pombe Magufuli, right, and outgoing president, Jakaya Kikwete. Several of the country's journalists say they hope Magufuli will reform repressive press laws. (Reuters/Emmanuel Herman)

Elections in Tanzania passed smoothly in October, but several local journalists and a media lawyer told me the spectre of anti-press laws is casting a pall over critical reporting in the country and that hopes for legal reform under the newly elected President John Pombe Magufuli remain muted.

December 15, 2015 12:48 PM ET

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Blog   |   Ethiopia

In Ethiopia, drawn out Zone 9 trial serves to further punish bloggers

Members of the Zone 9 blogging group. Four of the bloggers are currently on trial in Ethiopia. (Endalkachew H/Michael)

On Friday the Zone 9 bloggers are due to appear in court in Ethiopia for the 39th time since their arrest in April 2014. Endalk Chala, a co-founder of the group which is being honored with an International Press Freedom Award from CPJ this year, provides an overview of the drawn out trial and finds that despite the delays and setbacks, support for the bloggers is unwavering.

October 14, 2015 6:42 PM ET

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Blog   |   Burkina Faso

Resistance over the airwaves: Pirate station's vital role during Burkina Faso coup

Residents protest over the coup in Ouagadougou in September. With many radio stations silenced during the unrest, pirate station Radio Resistance was a vital resource for news. (Reuters/Joe Penney)

Radio Resistance was a pirate radio station born out of necessity. During Burkina Faso's short-lived military coup last month, in which many local radio stations were forced off air, it kept citizens informed and gave them the courage to stand up against the attempted takeover, Burkinabe journalists said.

Blog   |   South Sudan

Shooting of freelance reporter increases fear for South Sudan's press

Nhial Bol reads reports about the killing of freelancer Peter Julius Moi. Many journalists in South Sudan say they are being more cautious since Moi's death. (AFP/Samir Bol)

Freelance journalist Peter Julius Moi used to ride a motorbike without wearing a helmet, despite warnings from one of his colleagues to be more careful. Moi would just shrug off those concerns, saying that as a South Sudanese journalist "risk was simply part of life." Last month, the reporter was shot dead as he walked home from work.

Blog   |   Burundi

Silence in Burundi as violence forces independent press into exile

A Bujumbura road is blocked during unrest over elections in Burundi in July. Many Burundians, including journalists, have gone into exile to flee the violence. (Reuters/Mike Hutchings)

On June 24, a grenade was thrown through the window of Voice of America correspondent Diane Nininahazwe's home. It was one of three cases CPJ has documented in recent months where grenades were thrown into the homes of journalists in Burundi's capital, Bujumbura. Fortunately, there have been no fatalities, but there have also been no arrests.

Blog   |   Burundi

Burundi must investigate attacks on journalists

The body of a man killed overnight lies on a street as polls open for the presidential elections in Bujumbura, Burundi, Tuesday, July 21, 2015. (AP/Jerome Delay)

The Committee to Protect Journalists and 18 other organizations are urging Burundi authorities to investigate attacks on journalists and human rights defenders. Since the April announcement that President Pierre Nkurunziza would run for a third term, defying constitutional limitations and sparking months of protests, journalists have been routinely targeted. At least five radio stations were attacked and their staff threatened, inducing a mass exodus of journalists fleeing the country and leaving an information vacuum at a critical juncture. In presidential elections in mid-July, Nkurunziza won nearly 70 percent of the vote.

August 6, 2015 1:33 PM ET

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Blog   |   CPJ, Kenya

Mission Journal: Will Obama's visit boost hopes for press freedom in Kenya?

Billboards at Nairobi's airport welcome Barack Obama to Kenya. (CPJ/Sue Valentine)

President Barack Obama is expected to address a range of topics when he arrives in Kenya tomorrow. The Kenyan government says it plans to discuss security and trade, while opposition parties and civil society want good governance and human rights added to the agenda, according to news reports. We hope the discussion includes the commitments to improve press freedom that the Kenyan government made to CPJ last week.

On July 15, we released our special report, "Broken Promises: How Kenya is failing to uphold its commitment to a free press," in Nairobi to a room full of more than 50 Kenyan and foreign journalists. The report found that a combination of legal and physical harassment, as well as concentration in media ownership, is making it increasingly difficult for journalists to work freely in Kenya.

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