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Freedom House Study: The press is not free in Moldova

The study "Freedom of the Press 2006: A Global Survey of Media Independence" published by Freedom House states that in Moldova the press is not free. Following are some findings of the Freedom House investigation:

Despite legal provisions protecting freedom of the press, the government often restricted these rights. During the run-up to the March elections, the ruling Communist Party manipulated the media to ensure President Voronin’s reelection. Following international pressure, the Central Election Commission (CEC) revised regulation and increased public airtime for opposition members. However, the regulations were only approved two weeks before the elections.

Print media were able to express diverse political and public views throughout the year. Broadcast media were weaker as most private media are dependent on government subsidies since foreign funding is prohibited. However, publications were able to receive funds through foundations created by foreign governments.

The government-owned Teleradio Moldova continued its transformation into a public broadcaster. There were reports of politically motivated dismissals and the broadcaster maintained a bias toward the government.

Authorities do not control Internet access, although Internet services are limited due to underdeveloped telecommunication infrastructure.

In the separatist Transdniester region, media are restricted and politicized. There are few independent outlets; most are controlled, owned, or funded by the Transdniester authorities. Print media are required to register with the local Ministry of Information instead of the Moldovan authority.