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Czech Republic / Europe & Central Asia

Journalists attacked in Czech Republic since 1992

  
Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis at a news conference in Bulgaria in January. Three investigative journalists say police have questioned them repeatedly over their reporting on allegations of wrongdoing by Babis. (AFP/Nikolay Doychinov)

Czech investigative journalists say police repeatedly questioned them

Brussels, April 6, 2018–The Committee to Protect Journalists today called on Czech authorities to ensure that journalists can work without interference. Three Czech investigative journalists issued a joint statement on April 3 that said police tried to intimidate them by repeatedly bringing them in for questioning over their reporting on Prime Minister Andrej Babiš.

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President Miloš Zeman gives a victory speech in Prague after being reelected on January 27. Reporters covering the Czech presidential election say they were harassed and verbally assaulted. (AFP/Radek Mica)

Reporters harassed, verbally assaulted covering Czech presidential election

Journalists covering election night at the Czech presidential campaign headquarters in a Prague hotel on January 27, 2018, were verbally assaulted, shoved, and prevented from filming, according to reports and videos posted to social media.

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Balancing Act

Press freedom at risk as EU struggles to match action with values The European Union strives to be a global leader in press freedom but faces challenges from member states that have criminal defamation and blasphemy laws, and have introduced counterterrorism measures, including mass surveillance. The EU has made press freedom imperative in negotiating with…

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Balancing Act

About this report The report examines how the European Union upholds its commitment to press freedom in its interaction with member states, international bodies, and strategic partners. It examines the impact that repressive legislation in member states has on journalists, how calls for wider surveillance and governance in the wake of recent terror attacks risks…

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Balancing Act

Summary The European Union describes itself as a model for press freedom and an exemplary global power. Although many of its 28 member states feature at the top of international press freedom rankings, there are significant challenges that undermine press freedom and new threats are emerging.

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Balancing Act

The EU and press freedom “The European Union should…” Nearly every day this remark is on the lips of press freedom activists who blame the EU for not doing enough for press freedom. “The EU should call Hungary to order.” “The EU should slam Russia for its repression of the independent media.” “The EU should punish…

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Balancing Act

Press freedom in member states Press freedom is protected as a fundamental value by EU legislation, but journalists in the region face the threat of legal action from many member states that still have speech-chilling laws, and the threat of violence or intimidation from criminal and extremist organizations, as well as police and politicians.

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Balancing Act

Adding forces or shirking responsibilities? The EU and intergovernmental bodies When it comes to defending press freedom, the EU should be able to count on the support of other European institutions that share its values. The collaboration and interaction between the EU and these bodies should offer greater protection to journalists, but complex working arrangements…

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Balancing Act

The rule of law mechanism The Hungarian crisis in which Prime Minister Viktor Orbán brought in a succession of media laws and regulations that have crippled the independent press showed that most national governments and a significant number of MEPs underestimated Orbán’s threat to the EU as an institution and a community of values. They…

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Balancing Act

Hungary’s challenge to the EU When Viktor Orbán’s center-right conservative party Fidesz won parliamentary elections in 2010, few expected that Budapest would pose one of the most crucial challenges to the EU. “Orbán’s experiment is the first attempt to deconstruct the liberal system inside the EU. It is also the first time the EU has…

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