Last week’s coup in Guinea-Bissau, in which Prime Minister Carlos Gomez Junior and Interim President Raimundo Pereira were arrested, has been followed by grave violations of the right to information, including threats to journalists, a news blackout and media censorship. We urge the new military government to restore the media’s right to report news freely.
“The 12 April military coup has led to serious restrictions on the freedom to report news and information, although this is vital at times of political unrest, Reporters Without Borders said. “A news blackout, in which all radio and TV stations were closed, has been followed by military control of media content. We hope that the return to political and institutional normality promised by the ruling junta will result in full restoration of media activity.”
At a meeting with media executives on 16 April, the military high command said they could resume operating as long as they did not mention that protests that have been taking place in the capital. The goal of “constructing peace and national unity” was cited as grounds for this restriction. Reporters Without Borders regards it as the introduction of military censorship.