On the night of October 7, 2022, three armed men attacked Abdul Mujeeb, the chief executive officer and editor of Ibex Media Network (IMN), outside his office in the Zulfiqar Abad Jutial neighborhood in the northern area of the Pakistan-administered Gilgit-Baltistan region.
One of the men held him at gunpoint, threatening to kill him, while the other tried to break into his car, according to Mujeeb, who spoke with CPJ by phone, the Urdupoint news website, and the Digital Media Alliance of Pakistan, a local digital media industry group.
Mujeeb said he fought back, taking away the pistol from the man holding him at gunpoint after he opened fire and hit the seat of Mujeeb’s car. Mujeeb handed the gun over to the police while filing a report on the incident.
Mujeeb founded the IMN three years ago, focusing on current issues in Gilgit-Baltistan, a part of the Kashmir region that borders Afghanistan and China. IMN has over 250,000 followers on Facebook and nearly 2,300 followers on YouTube.
He believes the attack may have been a failed abduction attempt and says the Gilgit-Baltistan government has not launched any investigation to find the attackers – possibly, he says, because IMN’s Editor-in-Chief Shabbir Mir wrote an April 2022 report for The Express Tribune, one of Pakistan’s leading newspapers, alleging that Gilgit-Baltitstan’s chief minister held a fake law degree.
CPJ emails to the office of the chief minister and the Gilgit-Baltitstan government’s secretariat did not receive a response.