New York, March 12, 2019 — The Committee to Protect Journalists urged Afghan authorities to swiftly investigate the attempted assassination of journalist Nisar Ahmad Ahmadi in Helmand province today and bring the perpetrators to justice.
“The near fatal attack on journalist Nisar Ahmad Ahmadi is another reminder of the dangers journalists face every day in Afghanistan,” said Steven Butler, CPJ’s Asia program coordinator, from Geneva. “Still, they continue to report courageously, and authorities must do everything possible to ensure their safety, including bringing the perpetrators of this attack to justice.”
Ahmadi, a local journalist covering politics and security issues with Helmand-based Sabawoon TV, was on his way to work in Lashkargah city this morning when a bomb attached to his car detonated, according to news reports. He was severely injured and was first taken to a local hospital, then scheduled to be transferred to Kabul for further medical treatment, Ilias Alami with the Afghan Journalist Safety Committee told CPJ. Ahmadi was in stable condition, according to Afghan TV network TOLO News.
No group has claimed responsibility for the attack, according to TOLO News. Ahmadi has previously faced death threats from the Taliban and was likely on a list of journalists targeted for retaliation by the Taliban, Alami said. CPJ called the Afghan Ministry of Interior Affairs but did not receive a response.
Afghanistan was the most deadly country for journalists worldwide in 2018, according to CPJ research. At least 13 journalists were killed in relation to their work.
Editor’s Note: This text has been updated to reflect that, at the time CPJ spoke with Alami, Ahmadi was scheduled to be transferred to Kabul.