BUJUMBURA, June 8 (Xinhua) -- Burundian citizens held nationwide demonstrations on Saturday to protest against some international media for "tarnishing" Burundi's image, singling out some French media.
Burundian civil society activist Marguerite Barankitse, who has been in exile since 2015, was interviewed by Radio France Internationale (RFI) on June 2 about the situation in Burundi.
The interview was full of "flagrant, imbalanced" information in violation of the press law, chairman of the Burundian National Media Council Nestor Bankumukunzi said in a press statement earlier this week.
"The interviewee living in exile had visibly intention to tarnish the image of Burundi and its institutions by proceeding to lies, big insults and defaming the Burundian head of state," said Bankumukunzi.
The demonstrations took place at town centers of the country's 18 provinces and were led by heads of civil society groups.
In the commercial capital Bujumbura, the six-kilometer march joined by thousands of demonstrators began in Kamenge neighborhood in the north of the capital, proceeded through the 28 November Boulevard and was concluded at the French embassy located in Bujumbura's city center.
They had banners read "We, members of the civil society, reject with the last energy the behavior of some international media, especially French media, that support plotters of the failed coup of 2015 and their allies" and "Burundian women are against French media propagating false news on Burundi."
Hamza Venant Burikukiye, legal representative of the Coalition of Associations of People Infected and Affected by HIV/AIDS (CAPES+) and a leader of the protest, denounced" the behavior of some international media, mainly from France, that are tarnishing Burundi's image."
He said some international media are "cooperating with Burundi's enemies" who are planning to destroy Burundi through reporting "their lies and fabrications."