The quality of democracy in Slovakia dropped in the second quarter of 2008 to an overall grade of 2.8, according to a project carried out by the Institute for Public Affairs (IVO), which announced the results on June 30.
Possible marks range from 1 to 5, with 1.00 representing the optimal level of democracy. The ranking applies criteria and standards used by the EU and the European Council.
The results for the first three months of 2008 were 2.6. The worsening situation in the private-media sector was instrumental in the subsequent fall - while the media earned the best grade in 1Q08 (2.5), its mark fell to 3 in the following quarter.
The overall figure is the average level of four assessed areas: democratic institutions and a legally-consistent state (which earned a mark of 2.75); human and minority rights (2.75); legislation (2.5); and the media.
[The government recently introduced a controversial new Press Code, which the media alleges limits press freedoms. - ed. note]. TASR
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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