Gambian security forces have closed down two private radio stations based near the capital, Banjul, amid an escalating political crisis caused by President Yahya Jammeh’s refusal to accept his election defeat.
Teranga FM and Hilltop Radio were closed on Sunday, said Emil Touray, head of the Gambia Press Union, on Monday.
Teranga’s headquarters were shut down by a police officer and four members of the National Intelligence Agency, he said.
A government spokesman said he could not confirm the closures.
It was not immediately clear why the two stations were targeted by Jammeh, under whose 22-year rule the media has come under regular attack, rights campaigners say.
Teranga FM, popular for its review of newspapers in the local wolof and mandinka languages, has been closed four times in recent years.
The station’s managing director Alagie Ceesay was arrested in July, 2015 and charged with sedition. He was hospitalised twice in early 2016 while still in detention, Amnesty International said, and later fled to neighbouring Senegal.
Jammeh, who seized power in a 1994 coup, initially conceded defeat to opposition rival Adama Barrow but then called for fresh elections, drawing condemnation from local opponents and foreign powers.