IFJ Backs The Journalists In Mali and Calls Authorities for Dialogue with the Media

The International

Federation of Journalists (IFJ) today has backed the Day without press that

journalists in Mali have started until Boukary Daou is released. Daou who is

the managing editor of the daily “Le Républicain” was arrested on March 6 after

the publication of an open letter written by soldiers against Captain Amadou

Haya Sanogo, former coup leader.

 

“We are in

solidarity with journalists in Mali in this difficult period and call on

authorities to release Boukary Daou and start dialogue with the journalists’

fraternity,” said Gabriel Baglo, IFJ Africa Director. “The numerous arrests and

intimidations by the military coup makers have shown that the situation of

press freedom in Mali is deteriorating and that must stop”. 

 

Boukary Daou was

arrested in the premises of his newspaper by officers of the State security because

of the March 6 issue of the newspaper’s headlines carrying an open letter

written by Malian soldiers at the frontline in the North of the country.  The

soldiers have declared in the open letter being upset by the 6000 Euros monthly

salary granted to Captain Sanogo in his new appointment as President of the

Military Follow-Up Committee for the Reform of the Defense and Security

forces.  

 

The IFJ believes

that Boukary Daou has only been arrested because the open letter his newspaper

published was embarrassing for Captain Sanogo and the coup makers in Bamako.

“The publication of the letter cannot be the reason to arrest a journalist who

has done nothing but disclosed the opinion of the military on the battle field.

We don’t see how this letter cause soldiers to abandon the operations in the

frontline as expressed by some authorities in Mali”, Baglo added.

 

“The entire

journalist fraternity in Mali has called for the immediate release of Boukary

Daou and the respect by security forces of national media laws. Journalists are

subjected to a specific law which guarantees the free exercise of their work,

including protecting their sources”, said Makan Koné, President of “The Press House”

 

For having

recently documented several cases of harassments and intimidations against

journalists in Mali, the IFJ joins its affiliate Union Nationale des

Journalistes du Mali (UNAJOM) and its partner  The

Press House  to

state  that the war and the imposition of

a state of emergency cannot justify intimidation of journalists, as the

citizens deserve a minimum of information on the operations and the

stakeholders.

 

For more information, please contact IFJ on

+221- 33 867 95 87

The IFJ represents more than 600.000

journalists in 134 countries