Sunday, November 07, 2004

Low ranking for Australia in RSF report

Not especially comforting news from Reporters Without Borders.

Australia has ranked dismally in a global index on media freedom released today by Paris-based watchdog Reporters Without Borders (RSF).

Australia could only manage 41st position in RSF's third annual index of press freedom, lagging behind some former Eastern bloc nations, including Hungary (28), Czech Republic (19) and Poland (32).

The lowest ranking country being North Korea in 167th place.

The report pointed to the January 2002 arrest of ABC TV reporter Natalie Larkins, who was carted off and charged with trespassing on commonwealth property while trying to report on 300 hunger striking refugees at the Woomera Detention Centre in South Australia.

The report also criticised a number of other attempts by several groups to stifle press freedom.

Kind of worrying really.

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