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AFGHANISTAN

After decades of conflict, internet penetration rates remain exceptionally low in Afghanistan, with the ITU estimating that only 10.6% of the population were online in 2016.

Despite these challenges, Freedom House notes that Afghanistan is making some progress with regard to media freedoms, introducing a new bylaw on the establishment of independent media outlets in 2016, and the administration offering decrees to facilitate access to information.

The story of Afghanistan is largely a story of state powerlessness, however – despite progressive legal measures, it remains one of the most dangerous places for journalists to work, with at least 15 journalists being murdered throughout 2017-18.


Recommendations Received, Cycle 2

Amend regulations for filtering online content and other forms of online censorship in line with freedom of expression standards, and provide means for citizens to appeal the blocking of content

Recommending State: Belgium
Status:
Supported

Allow journalists, human rights defenders among all others to exercise the right to freedom of expression

Recommending State: The Maldives
Status:
Supported

Ensure that no government entities restrict the right to freedom of expression and that media regulations conform to Afghanistan's international human rights obligations, and ensure prompt and effective investigations of threats, attacks and killings of journalists in order to prevent them and to bring those responsible to justice

Recommending State: Lithuania
Status:
Supported

Ensure that any physical and moral harm against journalists or human rights defenders is subjected to an investigation and that those responsible are duly prosecuted

Recommending State: Belgium
Status:
Supported

Earlier Event: November 8
JORDAN
Later Event: May 14
ETHIOPIA