Appalling situation

Press freedom has been dramatically curtailed by major political upheavals and violence, including the seizure of the capital Sanaa by Houthi rebels allied with former President Saleh in September 2014, the collapse of the alliance with Saleh (who was murdered in 2017) and the Saudi and Emirati-led Arab military intervention that began in March 2015. Journalists are constantly exposed to threats, attacks and abduction when they are not the victims of the Arab coalition’s air strikes. At least 16 journalists and media workers are currently held by the Houthis, most of them since 2015, and one is being held by Al-Qaeda. A journalist who had been held by the Houthis died just days after his release in 2018. Journalists are also arrested arbitrarily and abused by militias in the part of the country controlled by the so-called legitimate government. Independent coverage of the war is rare throughout the country, as most media are controlled by the various parties to the conflict. Online access to media outlets has been blocked ever since the Houthis seized control of the telecommunications ministry. In all parts of the country, citizen-journalists are monitored and can be arrested for a single social network post.

in the 2019 World Press Freedom Index



167 in 2018

Global score


62.23 in 2018


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