Worst freedom records revealed

By Dominic Ponsford

Eritrea, Turkmenistan and North Korea are the only three countries in the world where there is no freedom of expression.

They occupy the bottom three places on the Reporters Without Borders World Press Freedom Index.

Other countries near the bottom of the list of 167 include China, Iran, Vietnam and Saudi Arabia.

Iraq
is ranked 157 because, RWB said, 72 media workers have been killed
there since the war started and it is a highly dangerous place for the
media to operate.

The US fell 20 places to 44, compared with last
year, mainly because of Judith Miller – who went to jail for 85 days
rather than tell a grand jury the source that revealed the identity of
covert CIA officer Valerie Plame – and legal moves to undermine the
privacy of journalistic sources.

Britain was ranked at 24, below many European countries, but above France, Italy and Spain.

According to RWB, death threats issued against journalists by paramilitaries in Northern Ireland accounted for its position.

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