Tunisia moves up 25 places in 2019 World Press Freedom Index (RSF)
18/04/2019 11:39, TUNIS/Tunisia

(TAP) - "Tunisia has moved up 25 places in the 2019 World Press Freedom Index of the Reporters without Borders (RSF), from 97th in 2018 to 72nd out of 180 countries," said on Thursday RSF North Africa Office Manager Souhaieb Khayati, specifying that Tunisia is in the lead of Arab countries.

In a statement to TAP on the fringes of a press conference held in Tunis to present the ranking, Khayati pointed out that Tunisia is an exception in this ranking, marked this year by a regression of freedom of the press in several countries including the democratic countries.

Tunisia’s progress, according to him, is mainly explained by the noteworthy decline of abuses against the journalists and media.

In this regard, Khayati called the government to support the freedom of the press in Tunisia, being “the foundation of democracy.”

Besides, he pointed out the need to reinforce the legal framework by setting up the new regulatory authority of audiovisual communication as soon as possible, in compliance with the international standards in matters of the freedom of information, indicating that the strengthening of the Tunisian young democracy still does not guarantee a total freedom of information.

In 2018, the Tunisian civil society organisations and the international NGOs expressed concerns about the slowness and shortcomings characterizing the elaboration of the new legal framework related to the media sector.

On the other hand, Tunisia’s commitment in favour of the freedom of information as one of the pillars of its democratic transition was marked in 2018 by the support to the launch of the International Declaration on “Information and democracy.”

The 2019 edition of the World Press Freedom Index shows that the hatred against journalists has degenerated into violence, which is a factor of a heightened fear. The number of countries considered as safe where journalists can safely exercise their profession continues to shrink, while the authoritarian regimes reinforce their grip on the media.

In the world ranking, Norway comes first and Turkmenistan is in the bottom.

Tunisia ranked 96th in 2016, 126th in 2015, 133rd in 2014 and 138th in 2013.

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