Burkina Faso Suspends BBC, Voice of America For Two Weeks Over Coverage of Civilian Massacre

Burkina Faso has suspended BBC and Voice of America (VOA) radio stations following their coverage of a Human Rights Watch report detailing a mass killing of civilians by the country’s armed forces.

Burkina Faso

Tonssira Myrian Corine Sanou, Burkina Faso’s communication spokesperson, announced late Thursday that both radio stations would be suspended for two weeks. Furthermore, other media outlets were warned against reporting on the incident.

The Human Rights Watch report, released on Thursday, documented allegations that the army had killed 223 civilians, including 56 children, in villages suspected of collaborating with militants. The report received international attention and was covered by major outlets such as the Associated Press.

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In response to the suspension, VOA affirmed that it “stands by its reporting about Burkina Faso and intends to continue fully and fairly covering activities in the country.”

“The programmes of these two international radio networks broadcasting from Ouagadougou have been suspended for a period of two weeks,” the communications authority (CSC) announced late on Thursday.