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Tags: Virus Outbreak | Press Freedoms

Report: Virus Pandemic Being Used to Curb Press Freedom

Report: Virus Pandemic Being Used to Curb Press Freedom

Sunday, 03 May 2020 10:38 AM

BERLIN (AP) — An international media rights group said Sunday the coronavirus pandemic is being used by governments around the world to increase restrictions on press freedoms.

In a report issued to coincide with World Press Freedom Day 2020, the International Press Institute concluded that in both democratic and autocratic states the “public health crisis has allowed governments to exercise control over the media on the pretext of preventing the spread of disinformation.”

It said authoritarian governments have been abusing emergency measures to “further stifle independent media and criminalize journalism,” while in democracies “efforts to control the public narrative and restrict access to information around the pandemic are on the rise.”

The Vienna-based organization said it has documented 162 press freedom violations related to coronavirus coverage over the past two and a half months, almost a third of which have involved the arrest, detention or charging of journalists.

The institute's report came three days after the International Federation of Journalists published a survey that found that the working conditions of news reporters around the globe have deteriorated during the coronavirus pandemic amid job losses and attacks on media freedom.

World Press Freedom Day was proclaimed by the United Nations in 1993.

Ahead of this year’s event, U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres said the COVID-19 crisis has underscored the importance of a robust and free press.

“As the pandemic spreads, it has also given rise to a second pandemic of misinformation, from harmful health advice to wild conspiracy theories," he said. "The press provides the antidote: verified, scientific, fact-based news and analysis.”

Follow AP pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

© Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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An international media rights group said Sunday the coronavirus pandemic is being used by governments around the world to increase restrictions on press freedoms.In a report issued to coincide with World Press Freedom Day 2020, the International Press Institute concluded...
Virus Outbreak,Press Freedoms
268
2020-38-03
Sunday, 03 May 2020 10:38 AM
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