Freedom House: Deterioration in Freedom of Expression
According to Freedom House’s annual report on freedom of press
around the world, Bahrain’s position has declined six places from
last year to 159th in the world. Bahrain also came in 12th place
in freedom of press out of the Arab states, 3 down from its position
last year and 2 down from its position 2 years ago.
According to Freedom House’s point system, Bahrain scored 72
points this year compared to 71 last year, which put it on the list
of ‘un-free’ states in terms of freedom of press. The report stated
that Bahraini legislation on websites is too harsh because the Telecommunications
Regulatory Authority controls the contents of websites, including
electronic publications. It also mentioned the amendment to the
law in 2008 which cancelled censorship and potential prison sentences
against journalists, yet journalists and Internet surfers may still
be in danger of legal action, according to the Anti-Terrorism Act
and the Penal Code.