Democratic watchdog organization Freedom House has released its annual ranking
of the world's most free and the world's most suppressed nations. For the twelfth year in a row, global freedom has been found to have declined. 71 countries experienced a decline in freedom with only 35 making a move in the right direction. Of the 195 countries assessed in 2017, 45 percent were rated as 'free', 30 percent as 'partly free', and 25 percent as 'not free'.
The United States
, while still classed as 'free', saw a year-on.year decrease in its score, from 89/100 in 2016 to 86/100. According to Freedom House, this is mainly due to a fall in its political rights, citing "growing evidence of Russian interference in the 2016 election", "violations of basic ethical standards by the new administration" and "a reduction in government transparency" as key factors.