Journalist shot dead covering protest

New York, June 6, 2005 ­The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns the killing of radio journalist Duniya Muhyadin Nur, who was shot to death on Sunday while covering a protest in Afgoye, some 18.6 miles (30 km) from the capital, Mogadishu.

Muhyadin, 26, was a reporter for the Mogadishu-based radio station Capital Voice, owned by the HornAfrik media company. She was covering a driver’s blockade on the Mogadishu-Afgoye road, according to HornAfrik director, Ahmed Abdisalam Adan. The drivers were protesting the proliferation of militia roadblocks. As they were attempting to stop private traffic, a gunman fired into the back of Muhyadin’s taxi, Abdisalam told CPJ. The bullet passed through the front seat and hit Muhyadin, who died instantly.

The gunman was identified as the co-worker and passenger of a protesting trucker, according to CPJ sources. Abdisalam confirmed reports that the gunman had fled, but that the truck and its driver were apprehended by the self-appointed administrative head of Afgoye.

Somalia has had no functioning central government since the collapse of the Siad Barre regime in 1991. Militia leaders have carved the country into rival fiefdoms, many of them wracked by violence. In February, BBC producer Kate Peyton was shot dead outside her hotel in Mogadishu. And in May, veteran journalist Abdallah Nurdin Ahmad, who also works for HornAfrik, was wounded by an unidentified gunman.

“We mourn the loss of our colleague Duniya Muhyadin,” said CPJ Executive Director Ann Cooper. “Somalia must find a way to end the climate of impunity and violence responsible for this tragic crime.”