Burkina Faso on Saturday ordered the rapid suspension of Radio France Internationale’s broadcasts, accusing it of publishing an “intimidation message” attributed to a “terrorist chief”.
It’s the second West African nation below army rule, after Mali, to ban French broadcasters from broadcasting this yr.
Burkinabé authorities spokesman Jean-Emmanuel Ouedraogo stated RFI had contributed to the “determined maneuver of terrorist teams” to dissuade the 1000’s of Burkinabers mobilized to defend the nation.
Firstly of the week, al-Qaeda’s Islam and Muslims Assist Group threatened in a video to assault villages defended by the pro-government VDP militia in Burkina Faso.
VDPs are civilian volunteers who’ve acquired two weeks of army coaching to work alongside the army on surveillance, info gathering, or escort missions.
The federal government assertion acknowledged that the federal government had already, on 3 November, protested the contents of the French Radio stories.
“In view of all the pieces that has occurred earlier than, the federal government has determined to instantly droop, till additional discover, the broadcasts of Radio France Worldwide programmes,” he added.
The federal government has additionally accused RFI of transmitting “misinformation” indicating that the chief of Burkina Faso’s army junta, Captain Brahim Traoré, stated there had been a coup try in opposition to him.
“Unfounded accusations,” RFI administration stated, in an announcement late Saturday, that it “strongly deplores this choice and protests the unfounded accusations that decision into query the professionalism of its stations.”
She added that the choice to chop RFI’s broadcasting service “was taken with out prior discover and with out implementing the procedures… established by the Greater Telecommunications Council of Burkina Faso”.
The assertion added that the France Médias Monde group, to which RFI belongs, “will discover all means to revive RFI, and confirms its agency dedication to media freedom and the skilled work of journalists.”
In keeping with RFI, the radio station is heard each week in Burkina Faso by greater than 40 p.c of the inhabitants and “greater than 70 p.c of opinion leaders”.
An AFP journalist in Ouagadougou confirmed that the French radio station may not be heard within the late afternoon.
Nonetheless, Burkina Faso’s authorities stated it wished to “reaffirm to nationwide and worldwide opinion its adherence to freedom of the press and opinion” and “the appropriate of the general public to acquire info”, whereas urging the media to “respect the principles and ideas set forth on this discipline in our nation”.
Burkina Faso witnessed two army coups this yr, led by military officers offended on the failure to handle the specter of jihadist teams.
It grew to become the second nation in West Africa to ban RFI this yr after Mali, one other nation below junta rule and battling jihadist forces.
In March, Mali’s ruling army junta introduced the suspension of broadcast authorization granted to RFI and France 24, after they revealed accounts implicating the Malian army in abuses in opposition to civilians.