Ever more authoritarian

Venezuela’s president since 2013, Nicolás Maduro persists in trying to silence independent media outlets and keep news coverage under constant control. The climate for journalists has been extremely tense since the onset of a political and economic crisis in 2016, and is exacerbated by Maduro’s frequent references to “media warfare” in an attempt to discredit national and international media criticism of his administration. Harassment of independent media intensified in 2017 and 2018, and RSF registered a record number of arbitrary arrests and violence against reporters by the police and intelligence services. The National Telecommunications Commission (CONATEL) strips overly-critical radio and TV stations of their broadcast frequencies, while foreign reporters are often arrested, questioned and deported. Many Venezuelan journalists fled the country in 2018 because of the threats and physical dangers. A 2010 law provides for sanctions in the event of any content “calling the legitimately constituted authority into question.” This has led to arbitrary arrests and defamation prosecutions. The print media are meanwhile often threatened by strange newsprint shortages.

in the 2019 World Press Freedom Index



143 in 2018

Global score


46.03 in 2018

  • 0
    journalists killed in 2020
  • 0
    citizens journalists killed in 2020
  • 0
    media assistants killed in 2020
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