Jamal, 30, a cameraman for the Indonesian state broadcast network TVRI, was kidnapped on May 20 by unidentified gunmen at his office in Banda Aceh, the administrative center of strife-torn Aceh Province. Though the journalist was abducted on May 20, just one day after the launch of a major Indonesian military offensive to crush the separatist rebellion in Aceh, it was not clear why he was targeted.
A military spokesman told Reuters news agency that Jamal’s body was found in a river on June 17. Other witnesses said that Jamal’s eyes and mouth had been covered with duct tape, his hands bound with a nylon cord, and that a noose lashed to a boulder was tied around his neck, according to Reuters.
Indonesia’s military has denied any involvement in Jamal’s murder and accused him of being sympathetic to the Free Aceh Movement GAM rebels, according to the Alliance of International Journalists, Indonesia’s oldest independent journalists’ organization. The motive behind Jamal’s kidnapping and murder remains unknown, but CPJ continues to investigate the incident.