Bulgaria

Bulgaria

Press freedom trapped

The few outspoken journalists are constantly subjected not only to smear campaigns and harassment by the state, but also to intimidation and violence. The situation of the media is very worrying because no one is interested in investigating or condemning violence against journalists. The police beat freelancer Dimiter Kenarov when arresting him in September 2020. Masked men beat investigative reporter Slavi Angelov outside his home in March 2020. Another investigative reporter, Nikolay Staykov, received death threats in June 2020 after releasing a documentary about high-level judicial corruption. Journalists are often summoned and questioned by police about their work, while politicians and oligarchs maintain relations marked by corruption and conflicts of interest in the pro-government media. Delyan Peevski, the oligarch who was the most notorious embodiment of this aberrant state of affairs, has sold his media outlets but his influence over the media continues to be problematic. The government allocates EU and public funding to media outlets with a complete lack of transparency, with the effect of encouraging recipients to go easy on the government in their reporting. At the same time, judicial harassment of independent media, such as Bivol and the Economedia group, constantly poses a threat to press freedom. One of Economedia’s owners, Ivo Prokopiev, was finally acquitted in June 2020 on charges that seem to have been politically motivated.

112
in the 2021 World Press Freedom Index

Ranking

-1

111 in 2020

Global score

+2.23

35.06 in 2020

  • 0
    journalists killed in 2021
  • 0
    citizens journalists killed in 2021
  • 0
    media assistants killed in 2021
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