FRANCE 24 and RFI Suspended in Mali

Mali’s media regulator ordered the permanent suspension of French media outlets FRANCE 24 television and RFI radio in the country.

The country’s media regulator, the Haute Autorité de la Communication, declared its ban “definitive” ban on Wednesday.

The decision came a month after the country’s ruling military junta accused the news organizations of presenting “false charges” of abuse by the Malian army, which led to its temporary suspension on March 17.

The Malian junta has staged two coups since August 2020, and has been accused of killing at least 17 civilians by multiple humanitarian organizations, including Human Rights Watch, since early December.

FRANCE 24 and RFI were followed by a third of Mali’s population, and are owned by France Médias Monde (FMM).

FMM said in a tweet that it “strongly contested” the decision and would “study all avenues of appeal” in response to the regulator’s ruling.

French President Emmanuel Macron also criticized Mali’s decision to suspend FRANCE 24 and RFI and said, “I condemn with the greatest firmness this decision, which seems to me totally at odds with the values espoused by the people of Mali since its independence.” 

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