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TunisiaZine el-Abidine Ben Ali
President

(JPEG) Since he pushed out President Habib Bourguiba in 1987 on grounds of “senility,” President Ben Ali has kept a tight grip on the country and the media. He amended the national constitution to get himself re-elected in 2004 for another five years and said he would “promote media diversity by expanding areas for discussion, encouraging private initiatives in the media and improving working conditions for journalists.” Called on by his party, the Democratic Constitutional Rally, to undertake a fifth mandate, President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali is expected to stand successfully in 2009. But journalists and human rights activists are still the target of bureaucratic harassment, police violence and constant surveillance by the intelligence services. The Internet is also closely monitored. Journalist Slim Boukhdir, of the news website al-Arabiya.net, was jailed for one year for “insulting an official in the exercise of his duty” “affront to public decency” and “refusing to produce his identity papers”. The Tunisian authorities constantly use trumped-up charges to silence independent voices. Plain-clothes police even surreptitiously seize opposition party newspapers.


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Predators
There are instigators and powerful people behind press freedom violations whose responsibility is not always apparent. Whether presidents, ministers, chiefs of staff, religious leaders or the heads of armed groups, these predators of press freedom have the power to censor, imprison, kidnap, torture and, in the worst cases, murder journalists. To better expose them, Reporters Without Borders has produced these portraits.

Armed Islamist groups
Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan
Ilham Aliev
Azerbaijan
Alexander Lukashenko
Belarus
Than Shwe
Burma
Hu Jintao
China
Diego Fernando Murillo Bejarano
Colombia
FARC
Colombia
Raúl Castro
Cuba
Teodoro Obiang Nguema
Equatorial Guinea
Issaias Afeworki
Eritrea
Yahya Jammeh
Gambia
Ali Khamenei
Iran
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
Iran
Israeli Defence Forces
Israel
Nursultan Nazarbayev
Kazakhstan
Choummaly Sayasone
Laos
Muammar Gaddafi
Libya
Star Force Police
Maldives
Drug cartels
Mexico
Armed groups
Nepal
State Security Service (SSS)
Nigeria
Kim Jong-il
North Korea
The Executive Force
Palestinian territories, Gaza Strip
Palestinian Security Forces
Palestinian Territories, West Bank
Vladimir Putin
Russia
Paul Kagame
Rwanda
Abdallah Ibn al-Saud
Saudi Arabia
Mohamed Dhere and Mohamed Warsame Darwish
Somalia
Al-Shabaab
Somalia
ETA
Spain
Gotabhaya Rajapakse, Defence secretary
Sri Lanka
Bashar el-Assad
Syria
Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov
Turkmenistan
Islam Karimov
Uzbekistan
Nong Duc Manh
Vietnam
Robert Mugabe
Zimbabwe