Report on the Media Situation in Tajikistan
The report had two aims: firstly, to give a general view on the media situation in this small former Soviet Republic, and, secondly, to make suggestions regarding future interventions in the field of media development. The first part of the report can be downloaded below.
Like the whole society, the media is subject to the dramatic transition process taking place in Tajikistan. There is still no daily newspaper nor private radio in the country, and the capital Dushanbe does not have private television broadcasting. Contradictory and restrictive media laws hinder, among other factors, a substantial media development. But, apart from the legal framework, the media system also lacks a sound social, political and economic environment that would guarantee its functioning and continuity. After years of civil war and terror, which caused numerous killings of journalists, the problem is not so much the systematic and direct censorship forced upon journalists, but the self-censorship developed during the war by the professionals as a survival strategy. This tragic mechanism is so efficient that the Tajik populations real concerns are still banned from media.