China, Cuba, Eritrea, Ethiopia the most dangerous countries for journalists

China, Cuba, Eritrea and Ethiopia put the most journalists in jail this year, together accounting for two-thirds of the 125 editors, writers and photojournalists imprisoned around the world, the Committee to Protect Journalists said Tuesday. The four countries combined imprison two-thirds of the 125 editors, writers and photographers in jail worldwide, the committee said. The United States, which is detaining journalists in Iraq and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, rose to sixth among countries jailing journalists, with five in custody. Subversion, divulging state secrets and acting against the interests of the state were the most common charges lodged against the media worldwide, the organization said. The number of journalists in jail around the world rose from 122 in 2004.

"We're disturbed to see the number of jailed journalists rise, and we're particularly troubled that the list of worst abusers now includes Ethiopia and the United States," Ann Cooper, the committee's executive director, said in a statement. China jailed more journalists than any other country for the seventh straight year, with 32, the committee said. Nearly half the cases involve online journalists.

Cuba ranked second with 24 reporters in jail, many charged in a 2003 crackdown on independent media and dissidents, the committee said. Eritrea has 15 journalists in prison, many for reasons the government has not explained, the committee said. Ethiopia has jailed 13 journalists, all arrested amid civil unrest in November, the committee said, reports the AP. N.U.

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