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Trump's 'war on media' reverberates in Asia

Region's strongmen endanger prosperity with press crackdowns

| China
The U.S. government under President Donald Trump can no longer be a reliable advocate for the rights of journalists worldwide.   © Reuters

Asia witnessed a particularly disturbing rollback in free expression last year amid escalating attacks on the media and harassment of journalists. And 2018 holds little promise for improvement.

One striking shift over the past year has been in the role of the United States under President Donald Trump. Once a staunch defender of media freedom, Washington can no longer be counted on to advocate for the rights of journalists worldwide. Trump, who has labeled U.S. reporters as "the enemy of the American people" and purveyors of "fake news," has abrogated the president's traditional role of standing up for the value of an independent press and the free flow of information.

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