Kabul, 2 September
Journalists Mohammed Bashir Ansari, Abdul Aziz Karimi and cameraperson Najib Faryad were injured in a road-side bomb explosion in the Chahar Bulook district of Balkh province in Afghanistan on August 28. The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), its Afghan affiliate the Afghan Independent Journalists Association (AIJA) and Indian Journalists Union (IJU) condemn the targeted attack and urge the government of Afghanistan to take strong measures to ensure the safety of journalists.
The bomb exploded when the vehicle carrying Mohammed Bashir Ansari, reporter for Arianana News, Abdul Aziz Karimi, reporter for 1TV, and Najib Faryad, cameraman from Arianna News was stuck. The vehicle was a part of an Afghan military convoy passing through the Chahar Bulook district of Afghanistan. The journalists were returning from their work on a documentary project in northern Afghanistan.
According to AIJA, Mohammed Bashir Ansari had fractured bones in the shoulder area and the other journalists were also injured. The injured journalists were taken to 209th Shaheen corps army hospital for the treatment. In the explosion, two members of the Afghan security forces were also injured.
Abiullah Mujaheed, Taliban spokesperson claimed the responsibility for the bombing, however, denied that the journalists were deliberately targeted. Balkh province is known for the insurgency between Taliban and Afghan force. On May 30, a roadside bomb killed Khurshid TV journalist, Zamir Amiri and technician Shafiqullah Zabih in Kabul.
Afghan Independent Journalists Association (AIJA) said: “We condemn the brutal attack on the journalists. We urge Government of Afghanistan to take necessary measures to ensure safety of journalist.”
Indian Journalists Union (IJU) said :” Safety and security of Journalists in Afghanistan is deteriorating . IJU urge upon the Afghan government to ensure safety of Journalists and to support independent journalism in the country.”
The International Federation of Journalist (IFJ) said: “The series of the assaults, targeted attacks and killing of journalists presents a grim picture for press freedom and the safety of journalists in Afghanistan. We urge the Afghanistan government to prioritise the safety and security of the journalists.”