Media News - Monday, August 27, 2012
Opposition newspapers in Ivory Coast that once supported ousted president Laurent Gbagbo on Friday suspended publication for two days following an arson attack on a press group. Notre Voie, the daily of Gbagbo's Ivorian Popular Front (FPI), and five other papers were absent from the newsstands to "protest against... sanctions, threats and now aggression," they announced in a joint statement. The headquarters of the Cyclone group, which edits the daily Le Temps, was vandalised and partially burned down by raiders overnight on Saturday. Hours earlier, an armed group attacked the FPI headquarters in Abidjan, abducting two people and wounding three. In suspending publication, newspapers close to the former president said they wanted to alert the public "to the danger of death that hangs over their journalists and their workers", according to the joint statement. The papers also denounced "threats and intimidation combined with heavy targeted sanctions by the National Press Council", the authority that regulates the press, which has several times taken action against opposition papers for failing to uphold professional standards. (AFP)
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