Armenia Government Bias
World Press Freedom Rank: Armenia 51/180
Reporters Without Borders (RSF) state that media is polarised since most outlets are close to political leaders. Further, RSF expresses concern regarding disinformation and hate speech, especially concerning the Nagorno-Karabakh territorial conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan.
Media Ownership and Government Analysis
TV is the primary medium in Armenia, and broadcast media must obtain a license that hinders media freedom. Armenian Public Television and Radio, also known as 1TV or AMPTV, is managed and owned by the state. Armenpress is a state-owned news agency. There are also numerous private agencies: such as PAN News Agency and Photolur (photo reporting agency).
Private media ownership is usually by politicians or businesspeople affiliated with political parties such as Kentron TV, owned by businessman Gagik Tsarukyan, who was the founder and leader of the Prosperous Armenia Party (PAP) until 2015. His daughter’s father-in-law Murad Goloyan is also a part of the party. Another TV station is Yerkir Media, affiliated with the Armenian nationalist and socialist political party, The Armenian Revolutionary Federation.
Amendments to the Armenian Criminal Code made insulting government officials and public figures punishable with hefty fines or prison sentences. The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) criticized the measure stating it “could harm journalists’ ability to report.”
In summary, Armenian media outlets lack independence from regulatory institutions, and private media ownership lacks transparency. The primary source of information is TV which is either directly or indirectly controlled mainly by politicians or business people with political connections. As a result, widespread self-censorship significantly affects the news on television.
Last Updated on May 7, 2022 by Media Bias Fact Check