By Elisabeth Witchel, CPJ Impunity Campaign Consultant
Published October 27, 2016.
Some of the highest rates of impunity in the murders of journalists can be attributed to killings by Islamist militant groups, CPJ found in its latest Global Impunity Index, which spotlights countries where journalists are murdered and their killers go free. The worst country for the second year in a row is Somalia, where the militant group al-Shabaab is suspected in the majority of media murders, followed by Iraq and Syria, where members of the militant group Islamic State murdered at least six journalists in the past year.
Several journalists in Kabul--the exact number is unclear--were beaten, harassed, and kept from working by security forces when they rushed to cover a suicide bombing on Monday that killed 14 people and wounded more than eight. In an email message, the Afghan Journalists Safety Committee (AJSC), an organization with which we work closely, said when the correspondents and camera crews arrived near the site of the explosion, they were stopped by the police, and some of them beaten. AJSC identified Mohammad Ghazi Rasouli, a television correspondent; reporter Tawfik Khoja Siddiqui; and a journalist who works for a Turkish news agency ANP as among those harassed.
New York, June 5, 2016 - Afghan interpreter Zabihullah Tamanna and American photographer David Gilkey were killed today while traveling in a military convoy in southern Afghanistan, according to their employer, U.S. public broadcaster NPR. The two were traveling with an Afghan army unit near Marjah, in Helmand province, when the convoy came under attack.
For people outside of Afghanistan, the January 20 attack on the Tolo TV van, which killed seven people and wounded about two dozen more staffers, was just one more horrendous event in a series of bombings, military skirmishes, attacks, counter attacks, and standoffs around the country. The attack was widely reported but, for outside observers, it soon melted into the steady stream of body counts that seem to be the way the country is viewed by the rest of the world.
New York, February 1, 2016 -- The fatal shooting of senior Afghan broadcast journalist Mohammad Zubair Khaksar on Friday and the beating of freelance reporter Yahya Jawahari on Sunday further raise concerns for the safety of Afghan journalists, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. The attacks follow a suicide bombing attack on employees of the Kabul station Tolo TV that killed at least seven people.
New York, January 20, 2016--A suicide bombing in Kabul today killed seven employees from the Afghan station Tolo TV, according to news reports and the station. The attack on staff returning from work at the privately owned station injured 27 others, including 26 staff, according to Tolo TV. No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack. In October, CPJ documented how a Taliban website threatened journalists associated with Tolo TV and the Afghan broadcaster 1TV with "elimination."
New York, October 13, 2015--A Taliban website on Monday threatened journalists associated with two privately owned Afghan TV outlets, Tolo TV and 1TV, with "elimination," according to news reports.
Published October 8, 2015
The ambush of a convoy in South Sudan and the hacking deaths of bloggers in Bangladesh this year propelled the two nations onto CPJ's Global Impunity Index, which spotlights countries where journalists are murdered and their killers go unpunished. Colombia exited the index as fatal violence against journalists receded further into that country's past.
For the first time since CPJ began compiling the index in 2008, Iraq did not claim the title of worst offender, as Somalia edged into that spot. The shift reflects a steady death toll in Somalia, where one or more journalists have been murdered every year over the past decade, and the government has proved unable or unwilling to investigate the attacks.
Do you believe the free flow of information must be protected? Sign the #RightToReport petition and demand that President Obama immediately:
1. Issue a presidential policy directive prohibiting the hacking and surveillance of journalists and media organizations.
2. Limit aggressive prosecutions that ensnare journalists and intimidate whistleblowers.
3. Prevent the harassment of journalists at the U.S. border.
Or click here to see the full petition, and join leading journalists like Christiane Amanpour, The Guardian’s Alan Rusbridger, Editor of the AP Kathleen Carroll, and Arianna Huffington in signing on.