Wednesday February 01, 2023

Greece faces ‘dangerous cocktail’ of press freedom threats: RSF

December 01, 2022

ATHENS: Reporters Without Borders on Wednesday warned media in Greece faced a “truly dangerous cocktail” of press freedom threats, a day after the Greek prime minister said the group´s rating of his country was “crap.”

In its 2022 ranking, a global benchmark for press freedom, the Paris-based NGO placed Greece in 108th position out of 180, the worst of any EU member state. The country´s 38-place slide is partly attributed to the assassination of a well-known crime journalist in front of his home in broad daylight in 2021.

There is also an ongoing scandal involving the wiretapping of several journalists. “Surveillance is a stain on Greek democracy that keeps spreading,” said Pavol Szalai, head of RSF´s European Union and Balkans office.

“Greece is a European country that combines all press freedom problems that exist in other European countries,” he told AFP. This constitutes “a truly dangerous cocktail for press freedom,” he said.

Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis was dismissive when asked about media freedom in Greece during a lecture in London on Tuesday. “Sorry but that is just crap, excuse my language,” Mitsotakis said, questioning the methodology which ranked Greece lower than “at least two dictatorships.”