Reporters Without Borders: Romania down three places in press freedom index


Romania went down three positions from 42 to 45 in the world rankings on press freedom issued each year by the French organization Reporteres sans Frontieres (Reporters Without Borders), below Papua New Guinea but ahead of the US, according to the rsf.org website. The Republic of Moldova is on 56, a place lower than last year. The same trio of Finland, Netherlands and Norway heads the index again, while Turkmenistan, North Korea and Eritrea continue to be the biggest information black holes, again occupying the last three positions. “The World Press Freedom Index is a reference tool that is based on seven criteria: the level of abuses, the extent of pluralism, media independence, the environment and self-censorship, the legislative framework, transparency and infrastructure,” said Reporters Without Borders secretary-general Christophe Deloire. Reporters Without Borders head of research Lucie Morillon said: “This year, the ranking of some countries, including democracies, has been impacted by an overly broad and abusive interpretation of the concept of national security protection. The index also reflects the negative impact of armed conflicts on freedom of information and its actors. The world’s most dangerous country for journalists, Syria, is ranked 177th out of 180 countries.”
The index’s annual global indicator, which measures the overall level of violations of freedom of information in 180 countries year by year, has risen slightly. The indicator has gone from 3395 to 3456 points, a 1.8% rise. The level of violations is unchanged in the Asia-Pacific region, but has increased in Africa.
The 2014 index emphasizes the negative correlation between armed conflicts and freedom of information. In an unstable environment, the media become strategic goals or targets for groups or individuals trying to control news and information in violation of the guarantees enshrined in international conventions.

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