Freedom House assesses Armenia as a partially free country with 51 points out of 100. Compared with the previous year, there has been progress by 6 points.
The report notes that in the spring of 2018, Armenians went out to the streets in protests and demanded Serzh Sargsyan’s resignation. In December 2018, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and My Step opened a pathway for systemic reforms in the parliamentary elections.
Armenia’s index for the freedom of media is 2 points out of a 4 point scale.
The report notes that there are independent and investigative journalists in Armenia, but their work is mainly presented online. Many television and print media outlets are politicized or have more commercial interests.
Many journalists are participating in self-censorship, thereby avoiding pressure from government or business representatives. Independent, small platforms provided strong coverage during the 2018 demonstrations, challenging state broadcasters and other media outlets.
During these demonstrations, several journalists were attacked by the police. During the 2018 parliamentary elections, there were no restrictions on the media, although politicized media platforms continued to work for their parties and candidates.
The report also states that in 2018, Nikol Pashinyan and his supporters have made efforts to speak more often with the press and the population, including through direct connections via social media.