The decline in media freedom in the Balkans is eroding the European values of democracy and rule of law and creating a climate ripe for disinformation that is cultivating anti-EU and anti-western sentiment across the region, writes Peter Horrocks.
As the pandemic adds to the pressure on democracy worldwide, there is a growing sense of the urgent need to protect democracy and its institutions in a concerted and coordinated manner. On both sides of the Atlantic, growing domestic threats to democracy have added to the external challenges, but also offer global momentum for stronger democratic alliances. In their June 2021 joint summit statement, the EU and the US pledged to support democracy across the globe. As international flagships of democracy, meanwhile, both the European Parliament and the US Congress are strongly engaged in advancing democracy in third countries.
Source : © European Union, 2021 – EP
Two recent reports focusing on democracy and media freedom by the international NGOs Reporters Without Borders and Freedom House went almost unnoticed in Belgrade. On World Press Freedom Day (3 May), EURACTIV Bulgaria looked at their Serbian neighbour, an EU candidate since 2012.