In an assessment of 196 countries, the independent advocacy group Freedom House found that Mexico and Egypt no longer have a free press.
The report showed that Mexico's free press has been declining for the last eight years because of violence associated with drug trafficking. Egypt has bumped down to "not free," and countries like Saudi Arabia, Libya, Syria and Tunisia were ranked among the worst in the world for media independence and press freedom.
"In 2010, we saw how readily governments in the Middle East turned to repression of the media," said Karin Deutsch Karlekar, managing editor of the Freedom House study. “The openings that have taken place early in 2011 give us hope that gains in the Middle East may lead the way to improvements in the global level of press freedom," she said.
The report showed that Belarus, Burma, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan ranked among the 10 worst countries for free press.
People can only be silenced for so long. It's just a matter of time before the countries that haven't started uprisings gather the courage to protest. Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Bahrain, Yemen and Syria are just the beginning — oppressive governments, beware.
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