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Burkina Faso suspends France 24 broadcasts in the country after al Qaeda interview

Burkina Faso's military government on Monday suspended France 24 broadcasts in the country after the TV station aired an interview with the head of al Qaeda's North African wing AQIM.

Relations between Paris and Ouagadougou have deteriorated sharply since Burkina Faso's military seized power in a coup last October.

In January, Burkina Faso gave France one month to withdraw its troops as it ended a military accord that allowed French troops to fight insurgents, including on its territory.

France 24 earlier this month aired an interview with Yezid Mebarek, also known as Abu Ubaydah Yusuf al-Anabi, who claimed the title of "emir of Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb" in 2020 after a French raid killed his predecessor.

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By interviewing the head of AQIM, "France 24 is not only acting as a mouthpiece for these terrorists, but worse, it is providing a space for the legitimisation of terrorist actions and hate speech," Burkina Faso's minister of communication, Jean-Emmanuel Ouedraogo, said in a statement.

France Medias Monde, which operates France 24, was not immediately available for comment on Burkina Faso's move.

Source: Reuters

Reuters, the news and media division of Thomson Reuters, is the world's largest multimedia news provider, reaching billions of people worldwide every day.

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About Hereward Holland, Gareth Jones

Reporting by Hereward Holland; Editing by Gareth Jones
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