Burkina Faso Suspends BBC, Conquest magazine

For Reporting Army’s Atrocities, Burkina Faso Suspends BBC, VOA

The Burkina Faso junta has suspended radio airings of the BBC Africa and the Voice of America (VOA) for two weeks over their coverage of a Human Rights Watch (HRW) report exposing the country’s army’s extrajudicial killings.

The military government disclosed its decision on Thursday evening.

HRW had said Burkina Faso’s military killed about 223 villagers in February. The killings happened after civilians were accused of collaborating with militants.

HRW accused the army of committing several rights abuses and atrocities against civilians while hiding behind a defence of combating terrorism.

Reacting to the report, the country’s communication council said it contained “peremptory and tendentious” declarations against the army likely to create public disorder and decided to suspend the programmes of the broadcasters over their airing of the story.

To enforce this decision, the council said it had ordered internet service providers to cut off internet access to the BBC, HRW and VOA websites and other digital platforms in Burkina Faso.

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