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press freedom

Kazakhstan: Government concerns for media ring hollow

With their country consistently ranked near the bottom of international press freedom...

Is Kazakhstan’s political opposition creeping back?

After a long hibernation, organized political opposition is making a comeback in...

Young activists and regime veterans: Armenia’s new compromise government

Armenia's new prime minister Nikol Pashinyan has formed his first post-uprising government,...

Uzbekistan: Hizb ut-Tahrir trial a testbed for religious boundaries

The opening hearing of Guzal Tokhtakhadjayeva’s criminal trial last month began late...

Class war: Armenia's student protesters set sights on universities

Students played a key role in the protests that ousted long-time leader...

Perspectives | Tashkent Syndrome: Is Uzbekistan getting a free pass?

What is the right bar against which to measure the seriousness of...

Georgia Protests: Nightlife against Nationalists

Georgia's fierce culture wars escalated over the weekend after a heavy-handed police...

Pashinyan team hints at release of radical opposition figure

An ally of Armenia's prime minister has suggested that the new authorities...

Uzbekistan: Journalist goes free at end of trial

A prominent journalist in Uzbekistan has been found guilty of public calls...

Kyrgyzstan's president waives libel fee as he shows a softer side

The president of Kyrgyzstan has earned some brownie points with the activist...

End of the line for Kazakhstan’s independent journalism?

Sometimes, Zeinulla Kakimzhanov enjoys appearing in Forbes magazine....

Perspectives | Contrasting the Media in America and Russia

Both Russian and American media have come under scrutiny in the United...

The World's First Democratically Elected Muslim Woman Was from Georgia

The village of Karajala is fairly typical of the dozens of settlements...

Uzbekistan: Intelligentsia Make Plea For Opposition Leader’s Return

More than 400 representatives of Uzbekistan’s self-described intelligentsia have signed an online...

Kyrgyzstan: President Drops Libel Damages Claim

Kyrgyzstan’s president has agreed to drop his claim to libel damages from...

Turkey Suspends Talk Show for ‘Insulting’ Azeri Leader and Wife

Turkey’s broadcasting watchdog suspended a popular talk radio program and slapped one...

Academic Freedom in Tajikistan Endangered: What is to be Done?

Academic freedom is imperiled in Tajikistan, and determined action by the international...

Azerbaijani Journalist Abducted in Georgia Sentenced to 6 Years in Prison

Azerbaijani investigative journalist Afgan Mukhtarli, who went missing in Tbilisi in May...

Turkmenistan: Fear and Loathing in Ashgabat

When the opportunity arose to travel to Turkmenistan and cover the 5th Asian...

The Bolsheviks and the Law: The Legacy of Arbitrary Justice

Analyzing the law through the prism of a revolution is inherently paradoxical....

Uzbekistan: Media Conference Overshadowed by Jailing of Reporter

A conference on media freedoms that took place this week in Uzbekistan...

Azerbaijan: EBRD Gives Go Ahead for Azeri Pipeline Funding Despite “Laundromat” Allegations

The European Bank of Reconstruction and Development’s board on October 18 approved...

Azerbaijan: Seeking to Arrest Critical Journalists throughout the Ex-USSR

The arrest of an Azerbaijani journalist in Ukraine marks a fresh instance...

Citing Intimidation, Embattled Azerbaijani Journalist Leaves Georgia

Fearing for her safety and that of her daughter, Azerbaijani reporter Leyla...

Azerbaijan: Journalist Apartment Give-Away Faces Criticism Over Selection Process

A government program in Azerbaijan to provide free state-constructed apartments to journalists...

Uzbekistan Puts a Stop to Live Broadcasts After On-Air Bust-Up

Politically themed live broadcasts have been cancelled in Uzbekistan following a on-air...

Azerbaijan’s Last Independent Media Company to Suspend Operations

The director of Azerbaijan's Turan Information Agency was arrested and ordered detained...

Kyrgyzstan: Biometric IDs Fuel Debate About Ethnicity

Kyrgyzstan’s government is distributing biometric ID cards with embedded microchips to its...

Azerbaijan’s "Last Independent Media Outlet" Faces Persecution

Azerbaijan’s government has accused the Baku-based Turan Information Agency, widely seen as...

Kyrgyzstan: Officials Shackle Journalists with Giant Libel Damages

In order to silence critics of Kyrgyzstan’s president, prosecutors earlier this year...

Armenia: A Year On, Police Station Attack Still Divides Society

Armenians marked the one-year anniversary of an armed takeover of a Yerevan...

Kyrgyzstan: Destroying Independent Media, Mission Accomplished

If the intention of Kyrgyzstan’s authorities was to destroy a prominent independent...

Blogger in Distress in Azerbaijan

For the first time ever, a foreign citizen who visited breakaway Nagorno...

Kyrgyzstan: Court Finds Against Newspaper, Activist, Orders Them to Pay $260,000

In a blow against press freedom in Kyrgyzstan, a court has found...

On the Question of Religious Freedom in Azerbaijan

By Hikmat Hajiyev, Head of Press Service, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the...

Kazakhstan: Journalist, Media Rights Activist Stabbed

The head of a media rights group in Kazakhstan has been stabbed...

Uzbekistan: Top UN Human Rights Official on Landmark Visit

The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra'ad al-Hussein, arrived...

Russia: Confessions of a (Former) State TV Reporter

After working for Kremlin TV, a Russian reporter explains how the state...

Kyrgyzstan: President Bolsters Protections Against Domestic Violence

Kyrgyzstan has in a landmark decision adopted legislation designed to provide greater...

Kyrgyzstan: Thin-Skinned President Sets Dogs on Media, Again

Life in Kyrgyzstan for independent media and critics of President Almazbek Atambayev...

Tajikistan's Islamic State Contingent Reportedly Suffers Grave Blows

Media outlets have in recent days reported on the death of senior...

Batman’s Armenian Mission

Batman on April 2 set aside the cares of Gotham City and descended on...

Azerbaijan: Government Escalates Hacking Campaign Against Dissent

Several of Azerbaijan’s primary independent news websites have been inaccessible for several...

Abkhazia Tightens De Facto Border With Georgia

Abkhazia has closed all but two of its de facto border crossings...

Kyrgyzstan: Prosecutors Sue Media for Offending President

Kyrgyzstan’s top prosecutor has accused two major media outlets of insulting the...

Georgia: Rustavi2 Claims Temporary Victory in Ownership Fight

The European Court of Human Rights on March 7 extended its freeze...

Kyrgyzstan: A Haven for Reporters amid Love and Strife

In a rough neighborhood for journalists, Kyrgyzstan is a relative safe haven....

Uzbekistan: Emboldened Media Shedding Self-Censorship

As headlines go, this one might not look especially exciting; “What Can...

Russia Wobbles in Support of Kazakhstan’s Territorial Integrity

The have been some rumblings of irritation in Kazakhstan over reports that...

Kazakhstan: Nazarbayev Reform Speech Gets Mixed Reception

Officials in Kazakhstan, by issuing an unexpected and urgent press release about...

Kazakhstan: Editor Gets Suspended Sentence

The editor a prominent newspaper has received a suspended five-year jail term...

Kyrgyzstan: Court Sets Precedent With Facebook Ruling

A court in Kyrgyzstan has set a precedent alarming to freedom of...

Separating Fact from Fiction in Russia’s ‘Information Wars’

The flurry of hacking, paranoia and fake news which preceded the biggest...

Azerbaijan Plans Hanukkah Party at DC's Trump Hotel

You know it’s that time of year again when the government of...

Kazakhstan: Prominent Newspaper Editor Detained in State Order Probe

Kazakhstan’s anticorruption agency says it has detained the chief editor of the...

Tajikistan: Embattled Journalists Join Rush to the Door

The combination of a stagnating economy and escalating repression is prompting a...

Uzbekistan Ratifies Convention on Freedom of Association

Uzbekistan’s acting president Shavkat Mirziyoyev has ratified the International Labour Organization’s Convention...

Russia: Bank Scores Direct Hit in Info War

As it has demonstrated with stunning effect in Ukraine and elsewhere, Russia...

Tajikistan: President Pardons Jailed Opposition Member

The president of Tajikistan this week granted a rare reprieve to a...

Georgian Party Proposes U.S. Military Base in Country

One of Georgia's leading political figures has called for an American military...

Kyrgyzstan: President Rages at Critics of Constitutional Fix

Kyrgyzstan’s president struck a sour and far from statesmanlike note during independence...

Uzbekistan: Head of Press Agency Reportedly Jailed

Uzbekistan’s top official in journalists circles, the general director of the state...

Tajikistan Mulls Prosecuting Rude Russian Reporter

Tajikistan’s General Prosecutor is considering prosecution for a Russian journalist for “inciting...

Kazakhstan: Mud-Slinging at Protesters Highlights Apparent Media Double Standards

Aimira Shaukentayeva reads her news bulletins with a stony and ferocious demeanor....

Freed RFE/RL Journalist Ismayilova Vows to Continue Investigations, Shrugs Off Threats

BAKU -- Investigative reporter Khadija Ismayilova says the Azerbaijani government decided to...

Azerbaijani Supreme Court Frees RFE/RL's Khadija Ismayilova

Azerbaijan’s Supreme Court has freed RFE/RL journalist Khadija Ismayilova from prison, RFE/RL's...

Embattled Baku Weighs Benefits, Risks Of Setting Ismayilova Free

If you believe in good omens, a rare season of amnesty augurs...

Kyrgyzstan: MPs Introduce Bill to Increase Control Over Media

Deputies in Kyrgyzstan’s parliament have proposed legislation that would ban foreigners from...

Tajikistan: US Supports Press Attacking Opposition

The US Ambassador to Tajikistan this week attended the launch of a...

Tajikistan: Index Shows Collapse in Media Freedoms

Tajikistan has slipped 34 places in the media rights group Reporters Without...

Freedom House: Economic Troubles Threaten Stability in Ex-Soviet 'Dictatorships'

In a new report, Freedom House warns that economic woes are threatening...

Kazakhstan: More Arrests in Media Graft Case

Six more arrests have been made in a high-profile corruption case involving...

Tajikistan: UN Rapporteur Alarmed by Lack of Media Freedoms

The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the protection of the right to...

In Azerbaijan, EU Talks Pipelines More than Press Rights

Counter to civil-rights activists’ hopes, it was petroleum rather than press freedom...

Uzbekistan: Tashkent Stifles Art of Debate With Terror Charges

Uzbekistan has never been a fan of free speech — but Tashkent...

Tajikistan: Prominent IS Fighter’s Spouse Reportedly Flees to Syria

Following in the footsteps of her spouse, a former paramilitary commander, Humairo...

Kyrgyzstan: Court Rejects Reporter’s Lawsuit Against President

As should probably have been expected, a countersuit filed by journalist Dayirbek...

Tajikistan: Data Gateway Deals Blow to Internet Freedom

In November, international experts and officials gathered in the capital of Tajikistan...

Watchdog Says Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan Among World’s Most Corrupt

An international monitoring group says people around the world demonstrated to governments...

'Torture by Hunger': Horse Breeder Describes Desperate Days in Turkmen Prison

After armed guards led Geldy Kyarizov through the gates of Ovadan Depe,...

Armenia: Widespread Reports of Irregularities Mar Constitutional Referendum

A controversial referendum in Armenia on December 6 endorsed constitutional changes that...

As Tajikistan Limits Islam, Does It Risk Destabilization?

Nabijon spends nearly 10 hours a day inside his one-room barbershop in...

Azerbaijan Gives Media a Lesson in Fact-Checking

For all their efforts to teach journalists how to do their job,...

Tajikistan: Economy Sagging and Little Hope in Sight

Tajikistan is the latest country in Central Asia to get a bad...

Uzbekistan: Political Activist Freed After Two Decades in Jail

For more than two decades, Murod Juraev languished behind bars in Uzbekistan...

Georgia: Will Regulators Turn Off Rustavi2?

Left in legal limbo, Georgia’s largest private national broadcaster, the pro-opposition Rustavi2,...

Kyrgyzstan: Government Slow to Respond to Domestic Violence

After sustaining severe beatings from her partner, Asya telephoned the police, seeking...

Azerbaijan: Post-Election, No Regrets about Absence of OSCE Monitors

Azerbaijan’s November 1 vote was no cliffhanger, with President Ilham Aliyev’s Yeni...

Kazakhstan: Stiff Jail Sentences Raise Free Speech Concerns

Harsh prison sentences handed down this week in two separate cases involving...

Azerbaijan: OSCE Parliamentary Assembly Official Raps Baku

A leading representative of the OSCE’s Parliamentary Assembly is voicing concern about...

Kazakhstan: Court Closes Embattled Magazine

A court has ordered the closure of one of Kazakhstan’s last independent...

The Rise of Europe's New Right

Two faces of Europe's refugee debate squared off this week in Dresden,...

South Ossetia Plans Referendum on Unification with Russia

South Ossetia, a separatist region that sees itself as an independent country,...

Kazakhstan: Activists Arrested for “Fomenting Strife” Online

Police in Kazakhstan have thrown two activists behind bars on suspicion of...

Alexievich Says Nobel Literature Prize Awards Entire Belarusian Nation

Belarusian author and investigative journalist Svetlana Alexievich has expressed "personal joy" at...

Tajikistan: Security Assistance and the Political Crackdown

One afternoon in late August, members of Tajikistan’s last real opposition party...

Uzbekistan: Tortured Activist Wins Landmark UN Ruling

A human rights campaigner who alleges that she was tortured, gang-raped and...