A recent report from Freedom House, an independent watchdog organization dedicated to the expansion of freedom and democracy around the world, has highlighted that for the 13th consecutive year there has been a decline in global freedom.
For Australia the report says, it’s freedom faces Challenges from the threat of foreign political influence, harsh policies toward asylum seekers, and ongoing difficulties ensuring the equal rights of indigenous Australians.
Countries that have had a decline in freedom include long-standing bc democracies like the United States to consolidated authoritarian regimes like China and Russia.
The report further highlights that over the period since the 13-year slide began in 2006, 116 countries have seen a net decline, and only 63 have experienced a net improvement.
Disturbing trends have also been uncovered in the report, such as ethnic cleansing is a growing trend, observed in 11 countries in 2018, compared to 3 countries in 2005. A growing number of governments—24 in recent years—reached beyond their borders to target expatriates, exiles, and diasporas with physical surveillance, kidnapping, and even assassination. Saudi Arabia’s murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Turkey put a spotlight on authoritarian regimes’ uninhibited cross-border pursuit of their perceived enemies.
According to the report, the top ten countries with no freedom in the world are:
- South Sudan
- North Korea
- Equatorial Guinea
- Saudi Arabia