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Number of journalists jailed for online writings on the rise: CPJ

[JURIST] The number of journalists imprisoned for their writings increased for the second year in a row in 2006 and one-third of those jailed are Internet journalists or bloggers, according to a new worldwide report [text] from the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) [advocacy website]. The CPJ report notes that of the 134 journalists imprisoned around the world in 2006, 49 chose to publish on the Internet. Most Internet journalists are jailed by their authoritarian governments for treasonous or "anti-state" allegations and, according to CPJ Executive Director Joel Simon, the numbers show that "authoritarian states are becoming more determined to control the Internet."

China leads the world with 31 imprisoned journalists [JURIST news archive], 19 of which are held in relation to information they published on the Internet. Behind China, Cuba and Eritrea round out the top three states with most imprisoned journalists. The US currently has three journalists imprisoned including AP photographer Bilal Hussein [AP report] and Aljazerra cameraman Sami al-Haj [CPJ report]. According to CPJ statistics, the first journalist imprisoned for publishing on the Internet was jailed in 1997. AP has more.

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