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Burkina Faso expels French newspaper correspondents News

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Burkina Faso has been taking a hard line against France since Captain Ibrahim Traoré (C) took power last year.

Burkina Faso has expelled journalists from two major French newspapers, in the latest move against France by Burkina Faso’s military junta.

Sophie Douce from Le Monde and Agnès Faivre from Libération arrived in Paris after being given 24 hours to leave.

The expulsions follow the publication of a Libération investigation into a video showing children being executed in military barracks.

Authorities called it manipulation disguised as journalism.

The two newspapers condemned the expulsions as a major setback for press freedom in the former French colony.

Douce said plainclothes security officers visited his home on Saturday and said they would withdraw his accreditation.

Douce’s reporting “obviously ended up looking unbearable” for the military regime that seized power in a coup last September, Le Monde editor Jérôme Fenoglio said in a statement.

Libération said Faivre’s investigation into the alleged deaths of children and adolescents at a military barracks likely upset authorities.

“These restrictions on freedom of information are unacceptable and the sign of a power that refuses to allow its actions to be questioned,” he said.

The expulsion of the journalists is the latest sign that the regime of Captain Ibrahim Traoré is cracking down on the French media.

It had previously suspended the broadcasts of two state media outlets, France 24 and Radio France International (RFI).

France 24 was suspended last month after authorities accused it of being a “communications agency” for the militants by broadcasting an interview with the head of al-Qaeda’s North African wing, Yezid Mebarek, also known as Abu Ubaydah Yusuf al-Anabi. .

France 24 described the allegation as defamatory, saying it had never invited the al-Qaeda leader to speak directly about his programs and that he “simply reported his words in column form, ensuring the necessary distance and context.”

In December, RFI was suspended after being accused of spreading false reports, which it denied.

Burkina Faso was once a staunch ally of France, but the military regime has turned its back on the former colonial power.

Instead, he is seen to be strengthening ties with Russia in a bid to defeat the militant Islamists who have wreaked havoc in the region.

In February, French troops withdrew after being asked by the regime to leave.



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