Togo ALERT: Editor in hiding

Kodjo Afatsao Siliadin, editor of the La Tribune du Peuple weekly, has gone into hiding, following the seizure, on the orders of Interior Minister General Sizing Walla, of some 2000 copies of the pro-opposition newspaper.

Mr Siliadin is alleged to have written “offensive comments” in an article carried in the April 4, 2002 issue of the paper, contrary to Article 108 of Togo’s new Press Code. The article had criticised the assault of a blacksmith, who had been accused of theft, by agents of the Togo Armed Forces (FAT).

The Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) condemns this latest seizure of the two-month-old pro-opposition newspaper because it is inimical to press freedom in Togo. It is also, clearly, an attempt to stifle the development of a critical opposition in the country.

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