Hope renewed for the family of French-Canadian journalist Guy-André Kieffer

Friday, April 15, 2011
Hope for the truth about the disappearance of French-Canadian journalist Guy-André Kieffer was renewed earlier this week after Côte d'Ivoire's ambassador to Paris, Ally Coulibaly, met with his family on April 13, 2011, days before the seventh anniversary of his kidnapping. Coulibaly received Kieffer’s wife, Osange Silou-Kieffer, and daughter, Canelle, along with two representatives of Reporters Without Borders and Aline Richard, the president of the Association Vérité pour Guy-André Kieffer. Kieffer is presumed dead, but details about his case remain unclear as associates of the Gbagbo government are among the key suspects. Coulibaly promised progress on the investigation now that President Ouattara was in power, "Everything will be done to support your position. The truth has been obscured for a long time and those who kidnapped him were protected by the government. This situation has now ended and justice will be done." Ouattara has supported the family’s calls for an investigation since Kieffer was kidnapped on April 16, 2004, after being lured to a supermarket car park in Abidjan by Michel Legré, the brother-in-law of the former first lady, Simone Gbagbo. While progress in Côte d'Ivoire has been exasperatingly slow, the French investigation led by Judge Patrick Ramaël named at least eight people responsible for the kidnapping, including Finance Minister Bohoun Bouabré, whom Kieffer had criticized in his articles. Kieffer was a freelance journalist who contributed to local Ivorian newspapers. He also worked as a commodities consultant. In Paris, a silent march in memoriam of Kieffer will be held on Saturday, April 16, 2011, at the Place de la Bourse at 2:30pm. Kieffer was awarded CJFE’s Tara Singh Hayer Award in 2004.

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