Status: Not Free
Legal Environment: 13
Political Influences: 28
Economic Pressures: 21
Total Score: 62

Population: n/a
GNI/capita: n/a
Life Expectancy: 45
Religious Groups: n/a
Ethnic Groups: Temne (30 percent), Mende (30 percent), other tribes (30 percent), Creole (10 percent)
Capital: Freetown

The government restricts freedom of the press though its protection is guaranteed in the constitution. Journalists are intimidated by various armed militias as well as by security forces. Two journalists were assaulted, one detained, and seven received death threats. Killing of journalists, common in years past, was not recorded in 2001. Corruption remains a problem. Many journalists, suffering under disastrous economic conditions as is the rest of the country, accept bribes. The level of professionalism in the media is also low, leading to misinformation and sensationalism, which, in turn, generate crackdowns on the press. Journalists frequently criticize the government. Several government and private radio and television stations operate.

This is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.