Journalist killed amid continued harassmentPosted Apr 14 2011
The head of satellite station Al-Masar TV, Taha Al-Alawi, was killed on April 8. “Gunmen opened fire on the car in which he was traveling,” said Reporters Without Borders. “Al-Alawi is the fifth journalist to have been killed in Iraq since the start of 2001 and the tenth since the United States announced the departure of all of its combat forces from Iraq at the end of August 2010.”
The Committee to Protect Journalists reported that the TV station is affiliated with Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s Dawa Party. CPJ adds that at least three other journalists have been killed in Iraq since March.
The protests in Iraqi Kurdistan reached their 55th day on April 11, with journalists continuing to be threatened and attacked.
Soran Omer, who previously edited the Rega magazine and currently works for the Islamic Group in Kurdistan, woke to an explosion on April 9 after his car was set on fire, according to Reporters Without Borders. A car belonging to Kurdistan Islamic Union (KIU) reporter Adil Hassan was also set ablaze on April 10.
Two KIU broadcast reporters, Farhad Muhamad and Abdulla Ahmed, were arrested while covering demonstrations in the town of Zakho on April 10, according to Reporters Without Borders. Radio Nawa reporter Niyaz Abdulla and Hawlati reporter Wiriya Hama Salih were held for two hours when covering a protest by Salaheddin University students on April 5. Abdulla was forced to give up her cell phone, voice recorder and camera and has yet to recover her equipment, she told Reporters Without Borders.
In a report released on April 12, Amnesty International found “disturbing evidence of targeted attacks on political activists, torture and other ill-treatment of people arrested in connection with the protests, and attacks or threats against journalists, media outlets, government critics, academics and students.”
For more examples of harassment and threats, check out Reporters Without Borders.