Iraq / Middle East & North Africa

Journalists attacked in Iraq since 1992

  

Iraqi federal police detain Kurdish broadcasting crews on assignment in Kirkuk

On August 2, 2020, Iraqi federal police officers detained two TV crews with Kurdish broadcasters Kurdistan 24 (K24) and NRT, seized their equipment, and destroyed a camera while the reporters were on assignment near the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk, according to K24 reporter Soran Kamaran, who spoke with CPJ via messaging app, an account…

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Iraqi Kurdish authorities file complaint against journalist for COVID-19 criticism

On July 22, 2020, the attorney general’s office of the Kurdistan Regional Government in northern Iraq filed a complaint against Kurdish journalist Rebwar Kerim Wali, alleging he violated the 2008 Law on Misuse of Communication Devices, according to news reports, a statement by a government spokesperson, which CPJ reviewed, and Wali, who spoke to CPJ…

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Kurdish Iraqi security forces arrest freelance photojournalist Qaraman Shukri at his home in northwestern Kurdistan

New York, July 8, 2020 — The Committee to Protect Journalists today expressed concern over the arrest by Iraqi Kurdish security forces of freelance photojournalist Qaraman Shukri.  On June 27, officers with the Kurdish Asayish security force arrested Shukri, a freelance contributor to pro-Kurdistan People’s Party (PKK) news website RojNews and the broadcaster KNN, which…

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Iraqi Kurdistan attorney general calls for closure of NRT broadcaster

New York, June 22, 2020 — Authorities in Iraqi Kurdistan should allow the NRT broadcaster to cover the news freely and without official harassment, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. On June 15, the Kurdistan Regional Government’s attorney general’s office sent a letter to the Iraqi Culture Ministry calling for the closure of NRT’s…

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Iraqi security forces harass 3 journalists in Kirkuk; Kurdish Iraqi police detain 1 over defamation lawsuit in Erbil

On June 9, 2020, Iraqi security forces in the northeastern Iraqi city of Kirkuk  prevented Azad Shakur, a reporter for the Kurdish Iraqi broadcaster Gali Kurdistan, and Diyar Mohammed, a reporter for the Kurdish Iraqi broadcaster NRT, from reaching their workplaces and threatened to break the camera of Hazhar Rasheed, a reporter for Shafaq News…

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Journalists assaulted, detained while covering COVID-19 protest in Iraqi Kurdistan

On June 2, 2020, Iraqi Kurdish security forces assaulted at least four journalists and detained two others who were covering protests against the COVID-19 restrictions in the northeastern Iraqi city of Sulaymaniyah, according to news reports and a report by the Metro Center for Journalists’ Rights and Advocacy, a local press freedom group. During a…

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Iraqi security forces stand guard outside the offices of the MBC 1 TV channel in Baghdad, Iraq, on May, 18, 2020. The office was attacked by protesters on May 18.

Protesters storm Baghdad office of Saudi broadcaster MBC

New York, May 19, 2020 — Iraq authorities should conduct a transparent and speedy investigation into the ransacking of the Baghdad office of the Saudi broadcaster MBC and hold those responsible to account, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today.

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A truck leaves Ibrahim Al-Khalil complex to a warehouse in Zakho outskirts, following the outbreak of COVID-19, in Dohuk province, Iraqi Kurdistan, on April 2, 2020. On May 16, security forces in Iraqi Kurdistan detained 8 journalists in Duhok covering a protest, and charged 4. (Reuters/Ari Jalal)

Security forces in Iraqi Kurdistan detain 8 journalists in Duhok covering protest; charge 4

New York, May 18, 2020 — The Committee to Protect Journalists today condemned the detention of at least eight Kurdish Iraqi journalists covering a protest in Duhok on May 16 and called on the authorities in Iraqi Kurdistan to drop all charges pending against four of them.

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Freelance photographer and videographer Zmnako Ismael (left) is seen covering the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo via Ismael)

Journalists in Iraqi Kurdistan tell CPJ of obstruction and opportunities covering COVID-19

On May 10, Saman Barzinji, the health minister of the Iraqi Kurdistan regional government, announced that the COVID-19 pandemic no longer posed a threat to the region, and that the area would gradually reopen, according to news reports.

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A security officer is seen in Najaf, Iraq, on February 24, 2020. Najaf-based reporter Ali al-Haj was recently threatened over his reporting. (Reuters/Alaa al-Marjani)

Iraqi reporter Ali al-Haj threatened over reporting

On April 16, 2020, a person who described themselves as the Sheikh of the Al-Mayah tribe texted Ali al-Haj, a reporter for the Iraqi broadcaster Al-Sharqiyya in the southern Iraqi city of Najaf, demanding he stop his reporting and threatened him, according to al-Haj, who spoke with CPJ via messaging app.

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