New York, April 26, 2018–The Committee to Protect Journalists today called on Afghan authorities to thoroughly investigate the killing of journalist Abdul Manan Arghand and to ensure that those responsible for his death are brought to justice.
Two unknown gunmen on motorcycles shot dead Arghand, a reporter for the privately owned station Kabul News, as he was driving to work in Kandahar at about 9 a.m, yesterday, according to RFE/RL and TOLO News.
Arghand had received threatening anonymous phone calls over his reporting for about a year, Abdul Mujeeb Khalvatgar, managing director of the independent group, Nai Supporting Open Media in Afghanistan, told CPJ. The journalist reported the threats to the local police and the National Directorate of Security, according to Khalvatgar, who has spoken with his colleagues in Kandahar about the case.
“The brazen killing of Kabul News TV journalist Abdul Manan Arghand underscores the dangerous landscape in which Afghan journalists work,” CPJ Asia Program Coordinator Steven Butler said in Washington, D.C. “Afghan authorities must thoroughly investigate the killing and take measures to ensure the safety of journalists who report being threatened for their work.”
No group immediately claimed responsibility for the shooting, according to TOLO News.
CPJ’s telephone calls to Kandahar police for comment went unanswered.
At least four journalists were killed in relation to their work in Afghanistan in 2017, according to CPJ research. CPJ also documented at least three deadly attacks on news outlets and areas where journalists work that killed several media workers.