New York, January 12, 2007—Unidentified gunmen killed a journalist today in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul. Khudr Younis al-Obaidi, a reporter for Al-Diwan newspaper, was shot by several men in a car as he walked along a street, The Associated Press reported. The Committee to Protect Journalists is investigating the circumstances of al-Obaidi’s death.
“We condemn the murder of our colleague Khudr Younis al-Obaidi and offer our condolences to his family,” CPJ Executive Director Joel Simon said. “Two Iraqi journalists have already been murdered in the first two weeks of the year, underscoring the terrible risks local journalists are facing and establishing once again that Iraq is the most dangerous assignment for journalists in the world. Authorities must do more to bring those responsible to justice, or journalists will remain vulnerable to attacks.”
At least 93 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 18 journalists and media support staffers have been killed there since 2003.
For more details, see: http://www.cpj.org/Briefings/Iraq/Iraq_danger.html.