Bahrain Added To The 'Enemies Of The Internet' List

Enemies Of The Internet

Huffington Post UK   First Posted: 13/03/2012 10:37 Updated: 13/03/2012 12:00

Bahrain has been added to the list of "Enemies of the Internet" compiled by Reporters Without Borders.

The country can boast a world-beating level of news blackouts, thanks to their well considered combination of technical, judicial and physical censorship methods.

Belarus also moved from "under surveillance" to "Enemies of the Internet".

India and Kazakhstan are now also "under surveillance" while Libya and Venezuela are free from suspicion of censorship.

The annual report by Reporters Without Borders classifies countries that severely curb freedom of expression on, and even access to, the internet. A second list is made up of countries whose behaviour is creeping towards extreme censorship.

This year's list stars some familiar names.

Egypt, which cut Internet access for five days during the February 2011 protests, is deemed an enemy of the internet.

Democratic Republic of Congo and Cameroon blocked SMS access, while Kazakhstan suspended the internet during elections, unrest and anticipated unrest. They're under surveillance.

China maintains its position on the enemies list, thanks to the way it commonly suspends communications in cities or provinces when it loses control, such as Tibet, Xinjiang and Inner Mongolia. I

Surprisingly to some, Australia and France are being watched for internet censorship.

Reporters Without Borders criticised Australia for its national filtering system. The RWB report says the the filter has waning support in that country, and the type of content it is designed to cover may change, making legislation irrelevant.

France was chastised for its three-strikes-and-out policy on illegal downloading, with suspension of Internet access is the punishment.

See the full list of enemies of the internet below:

Bahrain
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Bahrain offers a perfect example of successful crackdowns, with an information blackout achieved through an impressive arsenal of repressive measures: exclusion of the foreign media, harassment of human rights defenders, arrests of bloggers and netizens (one of whom died behind bars), prosecutions and defamation campaigns against free expression activists, disruption of communications. - RWB
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