The Committee to Protect Journalists says that the number of journalists jailed worldwide has climbed to 145 – the highest level since 1996.
The New York-based press advocacy group said in a report released yesterday that China’s crackdown on ethnic journalists and Iran’s sustained suppression of critics played major roles in the increase.
With 34 imprisoned journalists each, China and Iran together account for nearly half of the 145 reporters, editors and photojournalists behind bars worldwide.
The committee says that 17 journalists are jailed in Eritrea, 13 in Myanmar, and six in Uzbekistan.
It said that of those imprisoned, at least 64 were freelance journalists.