ATHENS – Greece faces more threats to media independence and the safety of journalists than most other EU countries, according to a new report Monday.
the report — entitled “Controlling the message: Challenges for independent reporting in Greece” – was compiled by Media Freedom Rapid Response (MFRR), a coalition led by the European Center for Press and Media Freedom, which was conducting an “Online Information Mission to Greece”. “ in December 2021.
Greece dropped five places in the ranking World Press Freedom Index 2021 produced by Reporters Without Borders, which described a “dangerous cocktail for press freedom” in the country, citing opaque allocation of state funds, evidence of internal censorship of state media and violence against journalists. Greece now ranks 70th in the index and is the fourth worst in the EU.
Trust in the media in Greece is also very low. A opinion poll A survey conducted by the German think tank Friedrich Naumann Foundation last year found that eight in ten Greeks believe the media is controlled by the government or political parties, while two-thirds believe the Greek media spreads false news. A recent survey for the Eteron Institute – a Greek think tank – found that only 10.7 percent of people trust the media.
the The MFRR report notes that the situation in the Greek media landscape is not new, but sees a deterioration in press freedom since the conservative New Democracy party took power in 2019, which is “obsessed with controlling the message” and “critical and minimize dissenting voices”. .”
“News that is uncomfortable or unflattering for the government, including coverage of gross human rights abuses, goes unreported in many media outlets, creating a significant barrier to the public’s access to information and, consequently, their informed participation in the democratic process. “, says the report.
It is also said that the murder of veteran crime reporter Giorgos Karaivaz in April 2021 has highlighted deeper issues related to the safety of journalists in the country.
“Investigative progress appears slow and there is a lack of basic transparency, which acts as a deterrent and creates suspicion about the authorities’ ability or willingness to protect the journalistic community,” the report said.
Late last year, the Greek parliament passed amendments to the country’s penal code, including a controversial amendment criminalizing the disclosure of false information. The Athens Journalists’ Association ESIEA warned that the wording was far too vague and could lead to reporters being prosecuted simply for expressing their opinions. Both the union and organizations such as Human Rights Watch have done so called for the law to be repealed.
the MFRR called on the Greek authorities to ensure that those behind the murder of Karaivaz are brought to justice quickly, all attacks on journalists are properly investigated, media are treated equally and state funds are allocated transparently. She also called for an amendment to the penal code on fake news.
https://www.politico.eu/article/greek-media-under-threat-says-report/?utm_source=RSS_Feed&utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=RSS_Syndication Greek media under threat, says report - POLITICO