Violations

Journalists Arrested

In June 2011, Jean Bosco Gasasira, the exiled editor of Umuvugizinewspaper, was sentenced to two and half years in jail for civil disobedience and insulting President Paul Kagameon the online version of his newspaper. In April of the previous year, the print publication of the same newspaper had been suspended for six months for allegedly inciting violence and criticising the…

Umusingi and Umurabyo Cautioned

According to Freedom House, there were reports that online news websites, Umusingi and Umurabyo, were contacted by authorities during 2012 and early 2013 to delete content related to local political affairs and ethnic relations. Umusingi and Inyereri – another online news site – were reportedly blocked on some ISPs. The former was first blocked in 2011 but as of mid…

Government intimidates journalists

Internet users in Rwanda are reported to have become more vocal in criticising the government, particularly on social media, probably because of the perceived anonymity of the web. According to Freedom House, in 2012, Rwandans used Twitter to protest a decision by the Kigali City Council to close down a local entertainment venue. In the same year, in response to…

Media Black Out following a Massacre

On September 18, 2011, a group of gunmen attacked the village of Gatumba, near the country’s capital Bujumbura where they killed 30 people. The following day, the CNC imposed a 30 day total media blackout on any information about the incident. Communication Minister Concilie Nibigira justified the one-month ban on the grounds of “guaranteeing peace and security” and ensuring “the…

Online editor for Net Press arrested and jailed

Jean Claude Kavumbagu, the editor of online newspaper Net Press, was detained for 10 months from July 2010 to May 2011 as a result of an article which criticised Burundi’s security forces and their ability and readiness to defend the country against possible terrorist attacks. He was charged with treason and defamation under the 2005 press law. Throughout his detention,…

The sanction against Iwacu online forum

The Iwacu a print and online publication allows readers to post comments to a forum after reading any press article. As part of the website’s user conditions, insults, defamation, racism and anti-Semitism speech are prohibited. Any posts infringing intellectual property rights are also not allowed. The website administrators reserve the right to delete infringing posts. Commentators are also required to…

Content Restrictions

The ISP CBINET provides child online safety protection services against adult content, including pornography. The “Parental control” service is available upon request. As written on its official web site, the aim of the protection is to avoid harming children. This is done by blocking adult content for subscribers who expresses the need to have those tools. In most internet cafés,…

Research by Freedom House

In addition, tests conducted by Freedom House found that by April 2013, 70 websites related to news and opinion, 16 websites belonging to different Ethiopian political parties, 40 blogs, seven multimedia websites, and 40 Facebook pages were not accessible in Ethiopia. According to Freedom House’s State of the Net 2013 report, Ethiopia’s centralised backbone made internet access highly vulnerable to…

The OpenNet Initiative (ONI)

In September 2012, the OpenNet Initiative (ONI), conducted technical tests of internet filtering which found that Ethiopia continued to block online political and news content, including the blogs and websites of a number of recently convicted journalists and bloggers.Tests conducted between 2008 and 2010 had also found extensive evidence of filtering of political content. In the 2012 tests, it was…

Reporters Without Borders Launches World Freedom Indicator 2013

News Update |

After the “Arab springs” and other protest movements that prompted many rises and falls in last year’s index, the 2013 Reporters Without Borders World Press Freedom Index marks a return to a more usual configuration. The ranking of most countries is no longer attributable to dramatic political developments. This year’s index is a better reflection of the attitudes…