Violence claims more journalists' lives in Iraq

[International Freedom of Expression Exchange]

Six journalists and media support personnel have been killed in Baghdad in the past three weeks amid worsening violence in Iraq, report the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), Reporters Without Borders (Reporters sans frontieres, RSF) and the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ).

On 29 October 2006, unidentified gunmen killed Naqshin Hamma Rashid, 30, and her driver Anis Qassem as the two were driving to work in central Baghdad, according to CPJ.

Rashid, a Kurd who was also known by colleagues as Sherin Rashid, presented Kurdish-language news on the Iraqi state television channel Atyaf. Atyaf is part of the Iraqi Media Network and broadcasts in several languages, including Kurdish and English.

Three days earlier, gunmen burst into the home of journalist Saed Mahdi Shalash in al-Aamariyeh, Baghdad and killed him and his wife. Shalash was a reporter for Rayat al-Arab, a newspaper associated with the Movement of Arab Nationalists. Prior to that, he worked for 20 years as a journalist for the Iraqi News Agency.

On 18 October, police found the body of Abdelmajid Isma'il Khalil, a 67-year-old freelance journalist who was abducted earlier that day while driving through the eastern Baghdad neighbourhood of Jamila.

On 13 October, Raed Qays, a journalist for the Aswat al-Iraq (Voices of Iraq) news agency, was shot and killed while driving in Baghdad's northern neighbourhood of Al-Dura. His sister, who was accompanying him, was unharmed. Qays, 28, also worked for Radio Al-Sumaria, part of the Iraqi satellite network Al-Sumaria, based in Beirut, Lebanon.

On the same day, Ali Halil, a security guard for Al Irakiya TV, was shot dead in the neighbourhood of Hurriya while on his way to work.

Visit these links:

- CPJ:
- IFJ:
- RSF:
- Iraqi Journalists Rights Defence Association:

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