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Journalists: Progress Needed Toward Press Freedom in Africa

Thursday, May 3, 2007

BERLIN -- On the eve of the U.N.-recognized World Press Freedom Day, several African journalists visiting here for an industry conference reflected on the state of media freedom in their home countries. They painted a picture of a continent where, despite some positive strides, media oppression has yet to be overcome by government respect -- and public demand -- for the basic rights to know and inform.

The tiny Horn of Africa country of Eritrea is among the world's top oppressors of the free press, according to the latest press freedom rankings from Reporters Without Borders (RWB). Even South Africa, widely considered the benchmark for what the continent can achieve in the way of press freedom, dropped in the group's rankings. ...

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