YEREVAN (Arka) — In its newly released annual report, Freedom House, a U.S.-based international human rights group, has rated Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh as ‘partly free’ countries. Armenia scored 46 points out of possible 100 (maximum freedom), while Nagorno-Karabakh scored 33 points.
Armenia’s neighbors Georgia and Turkey are also rated as ‘partly free’ countries, in contrast to Azerbaijan and Russia, where the situation is described as critical. All other countries in the region are recognized as ‘not free’.
The 2015 Freedom House report says 72 countries showed a decline in freedom for the year, the largest number since the downturn began. The human rights group says of the 195 countries assessed, 50 were rated “not free” and 59 deemed “partly free.”
The report says Syria, the Tibetan Autonomous Region of China, Somalia, North Korea, Uzbekistan and Eritrea were among the worst offenders.
Freedom House said democratic countries, especially in Europe, also clamped down on civil liberties, as they came under pressure from terrorist attacks and the strain of unprecedented numbers of asylum seekers from Syria and other conflict zones.