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CPJ calls for an end to impunity following Nepalese murder

New York, February 10, 2009—The Committee to Protect Journalists joins with its colleague in the Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ) in demanding an end to the impunity surrounding attacks on journalists in Nepal. The FNJ made the demands today in Kathmandu during a protest rally that came two days after the shooting death of Jamim Shah, the chairman of the Nepalese television station and satellite network Space Time Network.

Local and international media reports say Shah, a successful entrepreneur with many media and other business interests was killed Sunday evening by two masked gunmen on motorbikes in Kathmandu’s Lazimpat district. Shah died during treatment at a nearby hospital an hour later, the reports said.

“Police should act quickly to find Shah’s killers and determine their motives,” said Bob Dietz, CPJ’s Asia program coordinator. “The government has yet to make good on its assurances that it made when it came to power that killers of journalists will not receive political protection.”

 

Nepal ranked eighth on CPJ’s Global Impunity Index, with at least five journalists’ murders unsolved. 

 

Shah was a controversial figure, and with several well-documented public conflicts with the government and business competitors. The independent Indian Asia News International reported that Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal had visited Shah’s family on Monday to assure them that the government would pursue the case. The BBC reported that police investigating the attack have not been able to establish a motive so far. CPJ continues to investigate a possible link to Shah’s work.

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