|This week, CPJ released its 2019 prison census, finding that China, Turkey, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia are the worst jailers of journalists worldwide. For the fourth consecutive year, at least 250 journalists are imprisoned globally. While the majority face anti-state charges, the number charged with “false news” rose to 30 compared with 28 last year. See more findings in this video.|
The report is available in nine languages: English, Français, Español, Portuguȇs, فارسی, Русский, Türkçe, العربية, 中文.
CPJ will release two additional reports this month: “One Country, One Censor,” on Chinese influence in Hong Kong and Taiwan, will be published Monday December 16, and our annual report on journalists killed in relation to their work will be published on Wednesday, December 18.
CPJ’s prison census was accompanied by several blog posts:
Our team was also quite busy assessing on-going developments throughout the Middle East with a special focus on Iran, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon. Iran saw its' biggest uprising that saw mass demonstrations in over 200 cities and 28 of the 31 provinces throughout Iran. As we went to press, Reuters reported that some 1500 people had been killed. The parents of one of the fallen, Pouya Bakhtiyari, called for all to join them at the graveside of their Son in the South of the Tehran at 2:00 PM Local Time on Thursday December 26--The 40th Day of his death. We received reports that his parents were detained by Security Officials after his father refused Authorities' demands that he refrain from a public memorial for his Son. The discourse our team captured during our assessment over social media was telling :
Uprisings in Iraq and Lebanon have continued. This is as Syria began its' final assault on the remnants of the Opposition and Turkey began its' offensive after President Trump decided to withdraw. There is also the matter of the impeachment of President Trump as the 2020 campaign was in full swing as the tossle continued between all the various political factions--In spite of the challenges, a Budget was passed, the new NAFTA (referred to as USMCA) was approved although many other bills were not taken up by the US Senate:
Europe was also quite fascinating to be witness to as Britain finally figured out it wanted to be out of the European Union, Spain had a Government, protests in France continued, Greece stabilized and got a new Government. It will be quite a year in Europe as the new leadership for the European Commission took charge.
We have also had a special focus on China and India. India was continuing to deal with major unrest in the aftermath of the passage of the Citizenship Law as the hold that the BJP had on power seemed to wither away as it lost 5 states. Amit Shah, the Union Home Minister, was at the forefront of it all:
Amit Shah is dedicated to transforming India into a Hindu nation
DECEMBER 19, 2019 by Stephanie Findlay in New Delhi
China also continued its' assertive stance as the trade war with the United States continued. As we went to press, China initiative cuts in Tariffs , hosted a summit with the leaders of Japan and South Korea and launched a new Aircraft Carrier--as it also announced aggressive plans for space exploration.
As we conclude our final thoughts for the year, we wanted to close out with one of our must reads on the future that can be possible--we agree with the ever eloquent Alan Murray on what Shideh Binah noted: