New York, August 13, 2018– Mohammad Daud Anwari, a media technician for the state-run broadcaster Radio Television Afghanistan, was killed on August 10 during an attack by the Taliban on Tape-e-Television, an area of Ghazni city where many local media antennas are located, the Afghan Journalist Safety Committee (AJSC) reported.
The attack came as part of the Taliban’s assault on and around the provincial capital Ghazni, which is located 148 km (92 miles) south of Kabul, according to news reports.
“The ongoing attacks in Ghazni province and the death of media worker Mohammad Daud Anwari are indicative of the dangerous landscape Afghan journalists operate in and the pressures they face from all sides,” said Steven Butler, CPJ Asia Program Coordinator from Washington D.C. “The destruction of media antennas only further perpetuates Afghan people’s suffering and access to information.”
According to a tweet from AJSC, the Taliban also burned down a building housing privately owned Ghaznavian Radio-TV in Ghazni.
Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid denied that the Taliban intentionally torched the city’s television boosters, the news website Pajhwok reported.
Landlines and cellphone links to the city were cut off as many of Ghanzi’s telecommunications masts were destroyed in the fighting, The Associated Press reported.
Since fighting began on August 10, at least 100 Afghan police and soldiers, and at least 20 civilians have been killed, according to The AP.
Afghanistan is the deadliest country for journalists so far this year, according to CPJ data.
Editor’s Note: The first and third paragraph of this alert have been updated to reflect the correct spelling of Mohammad Daud Anwari’s name.