The International Federation of Journalists today condemned a “brutal and targeted” attack of a local journalist in Senegal while he was carrying out an investigation into a mounting religious controversy.
Yesterday, Pape Cheick Fall, a correspondent for Group Futurs Medias (GFM) in M’Backe (Eastern-Central) was attacked by four armed men using metal bars leaving him seriously wounded.
"This is a brutal and targeted attack that has left us all deeply concerned,” said Gabriel Baglo, IFJ Africa Director. “This is an appalling violation of press freedom and raises anew questions about the protection of journalists in an age when security is fast becoming a code-word for reckless and violent behaviour.”
According to the Fall's colleagues, the attack took place as a reaction to an interview carried out by Fall with a disciple of the religious guide, Cheik Béthio Thioune. This disciple contradicted the remarks of his Master who appears to have falsely claimed to have four million disciples at the time of the recent announcement of his entry in politics.
Daouda Diouf secretary-general of section GFM of the Union of News and Communication Professionals of Senegal (SYNPICS) told the IFJ that, “There is a clear intent to murder given that Fall’s assailants only aimed directly at his head”. “Our colleague has lost a lot of blood and his successful recovery is still not guaranteed.“
The IFJ is calling on the Senegalese authorities to act immediately and to bring those responsible to justice.
For further information contact the IFJ: +2218420141
The IFJ represents over 500,000 journalists in more than 110 countries