The management of France 24 has reacted to the “sine die” suspension of its programs in Burkina Faso. It “deplores this decision and contests the unfounded accusations that call into question the professionalism of the channel.
Suspended in Burkina Faso since Monday 27 March, the French television channel France 24 was quick to respond to the reason given by the Burkinabe authorities.
The Burkinabe government announced on 27 March that it had decided to suspend the broadcasting of programs by the French television channel France 24, for having interviewed the leader of Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (Aqmi) a fortnight ago. In response, France 24 said that it “never gave him the floor directly, taking care to report his words in the form of a column allowing the necessary distancing and contextualisation. In addition, this column allowed for the first time to confirm that the French hostage Olivier Dubois, who has since been released, was held by AQIM”.
Thus, “France 24 is outraged by the outrageous and defamatory comments of the Burkinabe government, associating the channel with ‘a communication agency for these terrorists’, which attempt to discredit the channel, whose independence and ethics no longer need to be demonstrated,” wrote the management of France 24, while recalling “its unwavering commitment to freedom of information as well as the professional work of its journalists.
The French channel also deplores the fact that “the decision to suspend the channel was taken without prior notice and without implementing the procedures provided for in the France 24 broadcasting agreement drawn up by Burkina Faso’s Higher Council of Communication.
“However, continuous exchanges between the regulatory authority and France 24 representatives have always allowed for constructive dialogue. The reason that is now being used as a pretext by the country’s government to justify the suspension of the channel’s broadcasting has never been mentioned,” the management added, noting that “in December 2022, the Burkinabe government had already suspended RFI radio under the same conditions that are out of line with common law, exempting itself from all respect for procedures.