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Group Says Press Freedom At Risk In Ivory Coast - 2002-09-27

The international media watchdog group Reporter without Borders is expressing concern about curbs in press freedom in Ivory Coast.

English to Africa reporter Richard Kotey spoke with Jean Francois, researcher for Francophone Africa at Reporters Without Borders in Paris. He said for the past several days, there have been many infringements on press freedoms, involving both local and foreign journalists.

He also said foreign radio stations like the BBC and Radio France International have been blocked. Mr. Francois disputed allegations from pro-government media sources that the foreign media are fabricating news and that it’s technical problems that are blocking the transmissions of foreign broadcasters. He said his organization has people on the ground who check the facts with a variety of sources and report back regularly.

Mr. Francois said everyone should know that there is crisis in the country and that is what the foreign media are covering. He said Reporters without Borders has asked the government of President Laurent Gbagbo to put an end to the curbs on press freedom in Ivory Coast.

Click above links to hear Richard Kotey's interview.