Mixed Results for Kazakhstan in Media Freedom Rankings


Analysts at Ranking.kz have provided an overview of press freedom in Kazakhstan and alleged violations against journalists. According to the International Foundation for the Protection of Freedom of Expression, Әdil sөz, there was a 20.1% decrease in incidents of violations against correspondents last year, with 434 incidents in 2023 and 141 from January to May this year.

Additionally, reports of pre-trial claims or lawsuits against individual journalists or editorial offices declined by 5% in 2023. Despite this, seven court decisions led to various sentences for journalists at the end of 2023. The most common violation was obstruction of legitimate professional activities, with 51 cases, including six violent ones, primarily involving police and state employees. Threats to journalists and editorial offices were also significant, with 44 incidents reported.

Nonviolent attempts to coerce journalists were noted to have decreased slightly. However, despite fewer reported violations, according to Reporters Without Borders, censorship issues have worsened.

Kazakhstan’s press freedom ranking fell from 134th to 142nd in 2024, with a score of 41.11 out of 100. In contrast, Kyrgyzstan ranks highest in Central Asia at 120th, while Turkmenistan remains one of the worst globally in 175th place.