New report lays out Europe’s press freedom challenges

A new report published yesterday lays bare the problems facing journalists in their efforts

to report freely in Europe.

A background paper presented to the Council

of Europe's Committee on Culture, Science, Education and Media gives an

analysis of the state of press freedom in Europe.

Welcoming the initiative, the President of

the European Federation of Journalists, Arne König, said: "This report shines a

light on the many serious cases in which press freedom is being undermined in Europe.

It includes the most obvious examples, including threats to journalists in

Russia, the imprisonment of around 100 journalists in Turkey and the grave

concerns that surround Hungary's media legislation. But the report also shows

that problems exist across the continent, including countries that many would

expect to have a strong record in defending fundamental rights."

The document will form the basis for a full

report into the state of press freedom in Europe that will ultimately be put to

the Council of Europe's Parliamentary Assembly. It is being steered through the

institution by Swedish parliamentarian Mats Johansson.

The EFJ is calling on the final report to

put pressure on countries to change their ways. Arne König added: "This report

just goes to show how fragile these fundamental rights can be. It is important

that the Council of Europe now takes time to consider the document and comes

forward with firm recommendations that will put pressure on countries to

respect the freedom of the press."

The EFJ is the European group of the International Federation of Journalists
The EFJ represents over 260,000 journalists in 30 countries

For more information contact the EFJ at +32 2 235.2200