The International Press Institute (IPI) is deeply concerned by the continuing violence against the media in Mali, and called for an end to assaults on, and the detention of journalists.

In response to continued attacks on Malian journalists, the country’s press banded together Tuesday in a media blackout and march on the prime minister’s office in the capital of Bamako.

As the country remains embroiled in a struggle for power, assaults on journalists have become commonplace. Most recently, eight masked gunman raided the offices of L’Independant, dispersing the staff by firing rifles into the air, before absconding with Publisher Saouti Labass Haïdara. Haïdara was found hours later, dumped aside a road with head injuries and a broken hand, according to a Reuters report.

Malian journalists have stated the attack was in response to a July 10 story critical of the government. Press members reportedly believe that the government isn’t making a strong enough effort to protect journalists or their rights.

A press release from the Mali Press Center, the strike’s organizer, stated that nearly a thousand press members joined in the five kilometer walk from L’Independant to government offices where they delivered a prepared statement condemning the frequent violations of press freedoms to Oumar Kanoute,  a cabinet member to the prime minister.

Other recent attacks include the July 2 robbery and beating of Abdramane Keita, managing editor of L’Aurore; journalist Habi Baby was imprisoned on June 12 for writing candidly about a previous arrest; Birama Fall, editor at Le Prétoire, was arrested in May for reporting on a mass grave found outside of Bamako; and on April 30 a radio station in the city of Koutiala was ransacked, causing millions of euros in damage and effectively closing the station, reports say.