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Bahrain and Belarus new 'Enemies of the Internet,' says Reporters Without Borders

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Reporters Without Borders has added Bahrain and Belarus to its annual list of "Enemies of the Internet."

reporters without borders
reporters without borders

Reporters Without Borders has added Bahrain and Belarus to its annual list of countries that it considers "Enemies of the Internet." The group says Bahrain is responsible for mass crackdowns on media covering Arab Spring protests, along with the death in detention of netizen Zakariya Rashid Hassan. In Belarus, meanwhile, web users were banned from visiting foreign websites, and redirected to pages with malware when attempting to use the social network Vkontakte amid major demonstrations against President Lukashenko's regime. The two countries join Burma, China, Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Vietnam on RWB's list of enemies.

Beyond the outright enemies of the internet, RWB also maintains a list of countries that it considers "under surveillance" for various reasons. It includes Australia for its content filtering system, South Korea for its policy of censoring propaganda from the North, Thailand for its harsh lèse-majesté laws, Russia for its arrests of bloggers and other opponents to the government, and France for its "three-strikes" policy on illegal downloading that cuts users' internet access. While not on the same list, the US also comes in for stern words from the group for its treatment of Bradley Manning, the soldier accused of being a primary source to WikiLeaks.