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03.05.2019 Europe

Paris square named for RFI journalists killed in Mali

RFI/Simon Rozé
MAY 3, 2019 EUROPE

A square in central Paris was named on Friday, 3 May, World Press Freedom Day, after journalists killed in Mali and Central African Republic.

'Place Ghislaine Dupont, Claude Verlon et Camille Lepage' is located in the second district of Paris, at the intersection of rue Aboukir, rue du Louvre and rue Montmartre.

The plaque was unveiled by Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo, alongside the families of the victims.

RFI journalist Ghislaine Dupont and sound engineer Claude Verlon were abducted and killed in Kidal, in the north of Mali, on 2 November 2013, while they were reporting. Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, or Aqmi, claimed responsibility for their deaths, but the details are still unclear as investigations are ongoing.

The square also bears the name of Camille Lepage, a photojournalist who was killed in unclear circumstances in the west of the Central African Republic on 12 May 2014.

The National journalist union proposed the square's name, which was approved unanimously by Paris city hall in April.

RFI has also set up an annual grant, awarded to a journalist and a sound technician.They are given the opportunity to come to Paris for a training course.

The winners from the 2018 edition, announced in Abidjan, were 30 year-old journalist Taby Badjo Marina Djava and 32 year-old technician Aman Baptiste Ado.

According to this year's analysis by Reporters without Borders (RSF) less than 10 percent of the world's population are now living in countries where journalists enjoy a favourable environment and are able to practice their profession freely and independently.

France is at number 32 in the press freedom list for 2019.