Lowest Ranking Countries for Press Freedom, 2007
According to The Worldwide Press Freedom Index 2007, the ten most censored countries in the world include five in Asia (North Korea, Myanmar (Burma), China, Vietnam, Laos), one in Africa (Eritrea), two from the former Soviet republic (Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan), one in the Middle East (Iran), and one in Cuba. Eritrea is ranked last, replacing North Korea, as having the least press freedom in the world. President Issaias Afeworki banished the privately-owned press in Eritrea, and the few journalists who had the courage to criticize the regime were thrown in prison, four of whom died in detention. In 2007, repressive governments targeted bloggers and online journalists as harshly as traditional media. In Vietnam, bloggers were arrested and websites were closed in order to restrict online news and information.