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RSF condemns ‘intimidation’ of Rwanda journalists

A journalist tying a story/AFP

A journalist tying a story/AFP

PARIS, Mar 20 – Reporters Without Borders on Wednesday condemned what it called “harassment” and “intimidation” of journalists by the Rwandan government, accusing authorities of trying to stifle independent reporting on the country.

The pressure group said Rwandan journalists had been the victims of government harassment for years, but that foreign journalists had also been targeted.

“The Rwandan government often responds to charges of blocking information by portraying itself as the target of malicious international groups that secretly wage what it calls a ‘Blame Rwanda’ campaign,” said Clea Kahn-Sriber, head of the group’s Africa desk.

“President (Paul) Kagame needs to understand that people can use legitimate arguments to criticize his government without questioning the very foundations of the Rwandan state.”

The group cited several examples of Rwandan and foreign journalists it said had faced harassment.

Reporters Without Borders ranked Rwanda 162nd out of 180 countries on its 2014 press freedom index.

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