Afghanistan: journalists killed in bomb attack

  • 13 Mar 2023

The targeted explosion by Islamic State militants took place on Afghanistan’s National Journalists Day.

The National Union of Journalists (NUJ) has joined the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) in condemning an attack against media workers in Northern Afghanistan on 11 March.

At least two journalists were killed alongside one other person at an event honouring journalists on Afghanistan’s National Journalists Day. The targeted attack by the Islamic State militant group is the second incident within three days in the Balkh province. 14 media workers including some in a critical condition were injured in the bomb detonation.

Since the Taliban assumed power in August 2021, journalists have faced growing threats to their safety, with many living in hiding in fear of persecution. The NUJ continues to liaise closely with the IFJ and sister unions, calling for the protection of media workers in the country.

The union has also co-signed a letter to Suella Braverman, home secretary, for clarity on urgent support available to Afghan journalists.

Anthony Bellanger, IFJ general secretary, said:

“The IFJ strongly condemns the heinous and targeted act of violence against journalists and media workers in Afghanistan and calls on the Taliban to take immediate action to bring the perpetrators to justice. This attack and the deaths of two media workers is a tragic reminder of the dangerous and challenging environment in which journalists work in Afghanistan and underscores the urgent need to provide greater protection and support to those who risk their lives to report the news.”  

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