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Concern Over Post-Election Constraints on Media Freedom in Zambia

Press Statement
John Kirby
Assistant Secretary and Department Spokesperson, Bureau of Public Affairs
Washington, DC
September 1, 2016

The United States is disappointed that politically motivated violence and constraints on media freedom have continued after Zambia’s August 11 general election.

We are especially concerned about the Independent Broadcaster Association’s August 22 suspension of three broadcasting licenses, which is a continuation of a troubling pre-electoral trend of restrictions on independent media voices and freedom of peaceful assembly. Zambia’s proud democratic traditions are not enhanced by such restrictions, nor will they help the country to unite and move forward.

At a time when Zambia’s judicial authorities are carrying out their constitutional duties to rule on a challenge to the election results, we call on political actors to meet and seek reconciliation in a display of leadership.

The United States remains Zambia’s single largest bilateral donor and is committed to the country’s economic and political development.

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