Publication Date: April 2014
Publisher: Council of Europe
Research and Editorial Team: Thorbjørn Jagland

Authored by the Council of Europe (CoE) Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland, this report provides an in-depth analysis of the state of human rights, democracy and the rule of law in the 47 member states. With regard to freedom of the media, a striking decline is recorded in 2014: lack of freedom of expression and media freedom is listed among the most serious challenges and affects 8 member States.
Threats to freedom of expression and media freedom, including violence against journalists, are pointed out as one of the main problems in the sphere of political freedoms. Moreover, the report points to the need to safeguard the independence of media in particular in conflict areas and on occasion of elections: journalists are target to specific forms of pressure when operating in conflicts, and biased media coverage may affect the electoral process and provide space to hate space to prosper.
In this 2014 report, the Council of Europe points out that Monitoring is an essential tool for helping member States to identify and remedy shortcomings in their compliance with Council of Europe standards, and claimed that a monitoring mechanism was needed in the area of freedom of expression. Following this commitment, in 2015 the Safety of Journalists Platform was launched to process and disseminate information on serious concerns about media freedom and safety of journalists in Council of Europe member States, as guaranteed by Art. 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

Tags: Council of Europe Member States European policies and legislation Media freedom

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