Violence, terror and lack of information – initial evaluation of battle for Abidjan’s impact on media

first_img News April 6, 2011 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Violence, terror and lack of information – initial evaluation of battle for Abidjan’s impact on media Reporters Without Borders is offering an initial assessment of the impact on the media of the past six days of fighting for the control of Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire’s commercial capital.An all-out battle for news and information has been fought in parallel to the military clashes. After being used for propaganda purposes, the prized national radio and TV stations were finally the target of airstrikes. As normal reporting became too dangerous, rumours and hard-to-verify reports began to circulate. Journalists were the targets of threats and became more scared by the day. RTI – a key military objectiveThe state-owned Radio-Télévision Ivoirienne (RTI) became a strategic objective for the Republican Forces (FRCI), the military force that supports Alassane Ouattara, since the start of its offensive on 31 March, when it was still under Laurent Gbagbo’s control. The fighting between the FRCI and the pro-Gbagbo Defence and Security Forces (FDS) damaged RTI’s premises and equipment, with the result that it could no longer broadcast from its headquarters in the Abidjan neighbourhood of Cocody. Its signal was cut on 31 March and continued to be cut for much of next day.RTI resumed broadcasting on the evening of 1 April from a mobile truck, transmitting propaganda messages urging the pro-Gbagbo “Young Patriots” to take to the streets to defend Gbagbo and the “republic’s institutions,” and accusing France of planning a “genocide” in Côte d’Ivoire.Like the presidential palace in the Abidjan district of Plateau and Gbagbo’s residence in Cocody, the national radio and television were on the list of 19 locations that were the target of airstrikes by the French helicopters of the French and UN peacekeeping forces on the evening of 4 April. Addressing the National Assembly in Paris yesterday, French defence minister Gérard Longuet said one of the objectives of the airstrikes was to destroy RTI’s antennae.Reporters Without Borders calls on the French government to provide an immediate explanation for the airstrikes on RTI. Under international law, not even a news media being used as a propaganda outlet by an enemy force constitutes a legitimate military target. It is protected just as any civilian building is.Reporters Without Borders is fully aware that RTI has been used as an influential and dangerous propaganda tool rather than a public service media. We have on several occasions, including in 2004, accused it of behaving like a “hate media.” The messages that it was putting out in the past four months, and again this past week, were very disturbing. Today, the RTI website was carrying a video showing the effects of violence against civilians in unbearably graphic detail, accompanied by a text message saying: “Alert genocide holocaust in Côte d’Ivoire – More than 1,200 civilians burned to death in Duékoué by pro-Ouattara forces.” The claim was unverifiable.Unable to report at the height of the fightingMost of the journalists in Abidjan were unable to venture outside this week because of the curfew imposed every day by the often blind violence of the fighting taking place on the streets. Many of them worked by telephone while holed up in their homes.The car of a journalist working for the French daily Le Monde came under Kalashnikov fire on the northern freeway on 31 March, the day that the FRCI entered Abidjan. A French TV crew’s vehicle was machine-gunned two days later. Other journalists stayed in their bureaux or found refuge at the French military camp at Port-Bouët. Around 20 foreign journalists were blocked at the Novotel Hotel in the Abidjan district of Plateau on 4 April, when the hotel was overrun by gunmen.The Abidjan newspapers have not been able to publish because of the chaos. The last time a newspaper was published was on 31 March, the first day of the offensive against the city. The daily Fraternité Matin was printed on 1 April, but could not be distributed. Since then, there has been nothing on the newsstands.Reporters have also been getting threats, compounding the safety problems for the media.Journalists targeted by both campsReports of a “hit list” that included journalists were circulating by word of a mouth at the height of the fighting in Abidjan last weekend. Several reporters received anonymous death threats. Many Ivorian journalists working for partisan news media have gone into hiding, fearing they could be the targets of a witch-hunt.“Journalists are very scared,” Reporters Without Borders said.Photo : AFP Threats against journalists in run-up to Côte d’Ivoire’s presidential election October 16, 2020 Find out more Follow the news on Côte d’Ivoire RSF_en Côte d’IvoireAfrica Help by sharing this information Organisation to go furthercenter_img October 29, 2020 Find out more The 2020 pandemic has challenged press freedom in Africa Reports News RSF’s recommendations for protecting press freedom during Côte d’Ivoire’s elections Côte d’IvoireAfrica News Receive email alerts November 27, 2020 Find out morelast_img read more

High blood pressure affects one in four Irish adults

first_imgRELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Email Advertisement TAGSdr liam glynnfeaturedhealthhypertension No vaccines in Limerick yet Vicky calls for right to die with dignity Limerick on Covid watch list Print Limerick Post Show | Careers & Health Sciences Event for TY Students Previous articleTogher Talk – Michael StoranNext articleLimerick lensman making waves Liam Togherhttp://www.limerickpost.ieLiam joined the Limerick Post in December 2012, having previously worked in other local media organisations. He holds an MA in Journalism from the University of Limerick and is particularly interested in sports writing.center_img Linkedin NewsHealthLifestyleHigh blood pressure affects one in four Irish adultsBy Liam Togher – May 30, 2013 1049 Walk in Covid testing available in Limerick from Saturday 10th April Twitter Facebook Hospital bosses deny claims of manipulating trolley figures WhatsApp ONE quarter of the adult population in Ireland is affected by hypertension, the medical term for high blood pressure.That’s according to Dr Liam Glynn, who was speaking during the Irish Heart Foundation’s (IHF) recent campaign for World Hypertension Day which included free blood pressure checks across the country, with the busiest stop being the Crescent Shopping Centre in Dooradoyle, where more than 120 people availed of the facility.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up Dr Glynn explained that the condition, despite affecting a quarter of the adult population, can be very difficult to diagnose and that adequate treatment is essential.“It is symptomless so we won’t know if people have it and it is very dangerous because it is a significant cause of heart attacks and strokes, which we are trying to prevent due to their implications.”Dr Glynn stated that only one in three adults with hypertension are diagnosed with the condition, and that only 33 per cent of those diagnosed are treated to an adequate level.He stressed the importance of going for a blood pressure check, as hypertension is difficult to spot but very preventable.“The best way to spot hypertension is to get your blood pressure checked. That’s the big message we’re trying to get across that no matter how stressed, fit or overweight a person is, they could have high blood pressure.As blood pressure increases with age, Dr Glynn recommends that any person over the age of 50 should get a blood pressure check every six months, and the same for any person who has been diagnosed with hypertension.He added that lifestyle changes such as regular exercise, weight loss and a low fat diet can help to ease people’s blood pressure.“I recommend exercising for 20 minutes a day, five days a week and weight loss also helps as there is a direct relationship between weight and high blood pressure. Reduce your salt intake and stick to a low fat diet, and if you are diagnosed, it’s important that you are on the right treatment and that you take your medication every day.”last_img read more