The situation around freedom of speech has seriously deteriorated in Europe over the last year. This is stated in a report published on Tuesday, February 12, on the platform of the Council of Europe to promote the safety of journalists. The document notes that in 2018 in 32 countries of the Council of Europe was recorded 140 reports of serious violations of freedom of speech.
The report indicates that the number of attacks on journalists in the countries of the Council of Europe does not cease to grow. The number of threats against journalists, including death threats, last year has doubled.
The drafters of the document note that new legislative initiatives also weakened the freedom of the media.
The report also said about the murders of two journalists in Europe because of their professional activities. We are talking about the murder of 27-year-old Slovak investigative journalist Ian Kuzyaka, and the killing at the Consulate of Saudi Arabia in Istanbul 59-year-old Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
The death of two more journalists in the report called “suspicious.” The authors of the document believe that the Russian authorities have not thoroughly investigated the circumstances of the death of the Russian journalist Maxim Borodin, who in April of last year fell out of the window of his apartment in Yekaterinburg. The murder of Bulgarian journalist Victoria Marinova was also not thoroughly investigated, say the authors of the report.
The most serious violations of freedom of expression detected in Turkey, Russia, Italy and Hungary.
In the same report, in 2017 it was reported about 130 violations of freedom of expression in 29 States of the Council of Europe.
The platform of the Council of Europe was established in 2015 in partnership with major international NGOs working on the issue of media freedom.