Iran General NewsReport: Media freedoms shrink in Iran, rise in US

Report: Media freedoms shrink in Iran, rise in US

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ImageAP: A media watchdog has singled out Iran and Israel for restricting journalists' freedoms. The Associated Press

ImagePARIS (AP) — A media watchdog has singled out Iran and Israel for restricting journalists' freedoms.

Meanwhile the United States comes in for rare praise from Reporters Without Borders, rising from No. 40 on last year's media freedom ranking to No. 20 this year. The group attributes the rise to more relaxed attitudes toward the media under President Barack Obama.

Attacks, arrests and censorship of journalists are among the criteria for the list released Tuesday by the Paris-based group.

It criticized Israel for restricting journalists during the offensive in the Gaza Strip. Israel sank to 93rd place overall.

Iran fell to 172nd of the 176 countries ranked after postelection protests that saw a crackdown on media coverage.

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