Russia and China have been named in a report as being among the worst countries in the world for taking away people’s freedoms.
The annual Freedom in the World report ranks nations according to civil liberties and political rights with each country placed in one of three categories: ‘Free’, ‘Partly free’ and ‘not free’.
Some 88 countries, including Britain and America, were seen as being ‘free’ while 49 – including the likes of Thailand, Egypt, and Turkey – were deemed to be ‘not free’.
Each nation is give a score out of 100 with the worst (-1/100) recorded by war torn Syria under the brutal dictatorship of Bashar al-Assad. South Sudan, Eritrea, North Korea and Turkmenistan made up the rest of the bottom five.
The number of people living under ‘not free’ conditions stood at nearly 2.7 billion people. But more than half of this number lives in just one country – China, which was named 19th from bottom on the list after recording a score of 14.
At the other end of the spectrum, Scandinavian countries, Finland, Norway and Sweden topped the list of ‘free’ nations with scores of 100, followed in the top ten by Canada, Netherlands, Australia, Luxembourg, New Zealand, Uruguay and Denmark.
Britain was named 27th with a score of 94 – above France but below Spain and Germany. America was 53rd, just above Greece and Mongolia, but below the likes of Italy and Costa Rica.
The report claims that the last year had brought ‘further, faster erosion of America’s own democratic standards’ which had ended up ‘damaging its credibility as a champion of good governance and human rights’
Also trends showing countries where freedom for citizens had improved or been on the decline.