The French daily publication Jeune Afrique was suspended on Monday by the military junta of Burkina Faso for publishing “untruthful” stories on stress and unhappiness in the nation’s armed forces, the statement by the French publication stated.
The suspension of Jeune Afrique is the most recent escalation in a campaign against French media since the West African nation was placed under military administration last year.
In response to two pieces that were published over the previous four days, the newspaper was charged of trying to undermine the armed forces and with using misinformation to “spread chaos” throughout the nation.
Since worries over the rising insecurity caused by a jihadist insurgency led to two military takeovers last year, relations between Burkina Faso and its erstwhile coloniser France have deteriorated.
The French ambassador to the nation received an expulsion order as a result of these tensions, which also sparked a reaction against foreign media.
French-funded media outlets Radio France Internationale and France24 have already been suspended by the junta for allegedly giving voice to Islamist terrorists mounting an uprising across the Sahel area south of the Sahara. The allegations were refuted by both media.
A report about the insurgency that aired on the French television station La Chaine Info of the private broadcaster TF1 was deemed to have “lacked objectivity” and was consequently suspended for three months in June.
Two French journalists who worked for the publications Le Monde and Liberation were banished from the nation in April. According to Liberation, the two journalists had “perfect integrity” and all of their documentation was in place, thus the suspension was not justified.