New York, December 12, 2006— The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns the murder today of an Associated Press Television News (APTN) cameraman in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul.
Aswan Ahmed Lutfallah, 35, was gunned down by insurgents while filming clashes between Iraqi police and insurgents in the city’s al-Karama neighborhood, The Associated Press reported.
Police Brig. Abdul-Karim Ahmed Khalaf told the AP that Lutfallah was having his car repaired in an industrial area when the clashes erupted. Khalaf said that insurgents spotted Lutfallah filming, approached him and then fatally shot him, according to the AP. Lutfallah had not reported any prior threats against him, the news agency said.
"This senseless murder once again demonstrates the ever present dangers facing news professionals in Iraq,” said CPJ Middle East Program Coordinator Joel Campagna. “Our deepest sympathies go out to Aswan Lutfallah’s family, friends, and colleagues. Like so many other journalists, he was targeted and killed simply for trying to provide the world with a glimpse of daily reality in Iraq.”
“Iraqi authorities must do everything in their power to apprehend those responsible for the growing number deadly attacks on the press and stop the cycle of impunity,” Campagna said.
Lutfallah began his journalism career at the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan–backed Kirkuk TV. He then worked for several other local television channels before joining AP Television News as a cameraman in 2005.
Lutfallah is the second APTN cameraman killed in Mosul. On April 23, 2005, cameraman Saleh Ibrahim was killed by gunfire near the city’s al-Yarmouk Circle, the scene of an earlier explosion that he and his brother-in-law, AP photographer Mohamed Ibrahim, had gone to cover. The AP said the circumstances of his death remain unclear.
At least 90 journalists and 37 media support staffers have been killed in Iraq since the U.S.-led invasion in March 2003, making Iraq the deadliest conflict for the press in recent history. Insurgents are responsible for the bulk of media deaths. Over 80 percent of all media deaths have been Iraqis working for local and international news outlets. Murder is the leading cause of death. After Baghdad, Nineveh province, in which Mosul lies, is the second most dangerous locale for journalists. At least 16 journalists and media support staffers have been killed there since 2003. For more details, see: http://www.cpj.org/Briefings/Iraq/Iraq_danger.html
Beirut, June 1, 2017--Suhaib al-Heeti, a reporter for the independent Asia Satellite Channel in Iraq's western Anbar province, was killed on May 30 in a suicide attack in the northern Anbar city of Heet, according to news reports, his employer, and the Iraq Observatory for Press Freedoms. He was...
Kurdish authorities detain journalist who reported on theft verdict
May 24, 2017 6:55 PM ET
New York, May 24, 2017--Authorities in northern Iraq should immediately release Aram Bakhtiar, a journalist for the independent broadcaster NRT, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. Kurdish security forces arrested Bakhtiar on May 22 on accusations of defaming a judge, NRT deputy newsroom manager Soran Rashid told CPJ....
Iraqi authorities shutter TV channel's Ramadi bureau
May 18, 2017 6:02 PM ET
Washington D.C., May 18, 2017--Authorities in Iraq's western Al-Anbar Province should rescind their order closing the Ramadi office of satellite news channel Dijlah TV, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. The Council of Al-Anbar Province on May 16 ordered the bureau closed, days after the Jordan-based channel aired...
New York, October 21, 2016 - An Iraqi journalist was killed today covering fighting between militants from the Islamic State group and Kurdish security forces, according to news reports. The killing came as at least seven journalists were injured in the past two days while covering the joint offensive...
Iraqi media technician and journalist killed in separate attacks
August 24, 2016 1:58 PM ET
New York, August 24, 2016 - Media technician Ali Ghani was killed in an attack by mortar fire while reporting in Jaziret al-Khalideya, in Iraq's Anbar province on Saturday, August 20. Correspondent Hussein al-Fares was wounded in the same attack, according to Al-Ahad TV, which employed both men. Al-Ahad...