EU slammed for suppressing Greek press freedom report – ‘Serious threat to journalists!’ | World | New
Reporters Without Borders wrote a report stating that the Greek police had “regularly used[ed] violence” to prevent journalists from covering the refugee crisis and anti-lockdown protests. As a result, Greece fell from 70th to 108th place in its latest press freedom ranking, lower than any other country in the EU, even Albania ranking higher.
The European Parliament expressed its support for media freedom, as did Reporters Without Borders.
However, despite this, they removed the report from their website, saying it “did not comply” with editorial guidelines.
Jaume Duch Guillot, spokesperson for the European Parliament, claimed this was because the report made no mention of “the Parliament’s activities and agenda”.
The report faced a backlash from supporters of the right-wing Greek government.
According to the Telegraph, an MP from the ruling New Democracy party called Reporters Without Borders a “left-wing NGO” and “foreign losers”.
Some have also suggested that the decision to delete the report came from European Parliament President Roberta Metsola.
Ms Metsola, like New Democracy, is a member of the European People’s Party (EPP), the largest group in the European Parliament.
Sarantis Michalopouloss, columnist for the Brussels website Euractiv, accused the EU of “lies”.
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Reporters Without Borders said this “represents a serious threat to the right of journalists” to publish information and increases the risk of self-censorship.
According to the report, the police “regularly use violence and arbitrary bans to hamper journalistic coverage of protests and the refugee crisis on the islands.”
A Dutch journalist had to flee for her life “after she was assaulted in the street following a smear campaign by pro-government media for her heated exchange with the Prime Minister over the pushback of migrants”.
The Greek government has also been lambasted after promising a yet to start investigation into the murder of Giorgos Karaivaz.
Mr Karaivaz, a crime reporter, was shot dead outside his home in broad daylight.