a fiery debate over press freedom has been pitting the independent press against
the government in the aftermath of a brutal beating by police in June of two
sports journalists after a soccer match.
The incident, which came amid a flurry
of threats and violence against independent media, triggered protests actions in Senegal, and recently
and a news
blackout as well as the formation of a local Committee for the Protection
and Defense of Journalists. In a surprising twist however, authorities have
accused the victims of triggering the incident by assaulting one of the
policemen, a claim ridiculed by journalists. A senior judge is overseeing the
case, but a larger national and international debate about Senegal's state
of press freedom is taking shape.