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» 26.02.2011 - African mercenaries in Libya: Fact or racism?
» 25.09.2009 - Nigerien editor face criminal libel charge
» 07.10.2008 - Niger radio director freed after 384 days
» 22.08.2008 - Niger extends state of alert
» 21.08.2008 - Niger rebels deny ceasefire
» 02.05.2008 - Niger River to be rescued
» 07.04.2008 - Niger sued over slavery laws
» 31.03.2008 - Niger rebels seize village

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Niger media punished for rebel coverage

afrol News, 13 July - The media in Niger has been punished for covering the activities of a rebel group in the northern part of the country, the Accra-based Media Foundation for West Africa, confirmed.

A bi-weekly privately-owned newspaper in the second city Agadez, 1000 km from the capital Niamey, 'Air Info' was suspended by the Supreme Council of Communication for giving coverage to the northern rebels.

Under the Nigerien media law, the government provides annual subsidy to the existing media. But the council said 'Air Info' would not be a beneficiary of the subsidy.

The paper's troubles with the state began when it published an article and photographs of the fighters of the Movement des Nigériens pour la Justice, an armed movement that had been fighting in the northern region since March 2007.

Disturbed by the paper's coverage to the rebel movement, the communication council issued a notice, warning 'Air Info' against "praising the armed rebellion".

The body also dispatched warnings to three weeklies - 'L'evenement', 'Libération' and 'Opinion' on 2 July. Editors of these papers have been accused of turning their publications into propaganda tools of the rebel movement.

The northern rebels said they would continue to fight until the government takes them seriously and engage them in dialogues or peace talks. Nigerien government described the body as bandits bent on making life difficult for innocent civilians.

After failing to defeat the rebels, the Nigerien government blew the whistle, accusing foreign forces of backing the northern rebels.

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