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UN 'deeply troubled' by Burkina media clampdown

A man watches a television showing the cut signal of the France 24 channel, hours after the ruling junta in Burkina Faso decided to suspend the channel, on March 27, 2023   -  
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Burkina Faso

UN expressed deep concerns Thursday by Burkina Faso's increasing clampdown on the media amid wider curbs on freedoms in the west African country.

Burkina Faso recently expelled correspondents from the Liberation and Le Monde newspapers, in the latest move against French media by the junta ruling .

"We are deeply troubled by the new restrictions on media and civic space in Burkina Faso following the suspension of media outlets and the expulsion of two foreign correspondents from the country...

“In this period of transition, protection of independent voices is more necessary than ever – to enable scrutiny, to facilitate accountability, and to allow the space for the Burkinabé people to build a resilient, stable, and inclusive society together.” expressed Ravina Shamdasani, spokesperson for the High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Burkina Faso, which witnessed two coups last year, is battling a jihadist insurgency that spilled over in 2015 from neighbouring Mali, which is also run by the military.

Since military junta leader Ibrahim Traore seized power in September, the activities of all political parties and civil society organisations in Burkina Faso have been suspended.

Media freedoms have been curbed, with the authorities suspending Radio France Internationale and France 24 broadcasts.

Both RFI and France 24, which cover African affairs closely and are popular in French-speaking west African nations, have been suspended in Mali.

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