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Ivorian authorities ban six privately-owned publications

(MFWA/IFEX) - 11 September 2012 - On 7 September 2012, Côte d'Ivoire's statutory print regulatory body imposed a ban on six publications of Notre Voie, a privately owned, pro-Gbagbo daily.

The National Press Council (CNP) issued a communiqué that rebukes the newspaper for publishing photographs of key figures from the former regime alongside captions reading "Minister." The CNP says these captions create the impression of "the existence of two governments in Cote d'Ivoire."

A correspondent for The Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) reported that the CNP charged the newspaper with contradicting a law instilled on April 14, 2011. The law declares that all decisions taken under former President Laurent Gbagbo since December 4, 2010 are "null and void."

"Describing [the people photographed] as such, in spite of the ordinance, falls under sedition and reveals a hidden agenda," the communiqué says.

In addition to the ban, authorities have warned all printers to stop publishing Notre Voie in any form whatsoever, MFWA's correspondent said.

The newspaper has 30 days, from the time of notification, to refer to the matter in court, the statement says.

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