Journalist shot dead

May 23, 2008


KHAR, May 22: Unidentified assailants shot dead a correspondent of a private TV channel in Bajaur on Thursday.

Witnesses said that five gunmen sprayed Mohammad Ibrahim Khan, a correspondent for the Express television channel and Daily Express, with bullets near Inayat Kali while he was going to his village from Mamond tehsil on a motorcycle.

The newsman died on way to hospital. He left behind three sons and two daughters.

No group has claimed responsibility so far for the killing.

Ibrahim Khan was general secretary of the Tribal Union of Journalists (Bajaur unit).

The witnesses said the assailants snatched a camera and a cellphone from Ibrahim Khan before gunning him down.

Sources said that Ibrahim had interviewed Maulvi Umar, spokesman for the Tehrik Taliban-i-Pakistan, early in the morning.

Family sources said they had no enmity with anyone.

The gruesome murder of the journalist shocked people of the area and the journalist community.

The Tribal Union of Journalists, condemning the murder, said Ibrahim was the sixth journalist to have been shot dead in the line of duty. The union called upon the government to provide protection to tribal journalists.

CONDEMNATION: The Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) has condemned Ibrahim Khan’s murder, calling upon the government and media owners to take steps for journalists’ safety and to arrest the killers.

“Ibrahim was killed for his work and we salute him for his dedication,” the PFUJ said in a statement.

“We strongly condemn this cowardice and demand immediate arrest of the killers and those behind it,” the statement said.

Ibrahim’s murder raises the number of journalists killed in the country since 2001 to 29.

The PFUJ termed Pakistan, especially the tribal region, one of the most dangerous places for reporters.

It urged media organisations to send only those journalists to the tribal area, and also some of the settled areas in NWFP, who were trained, insured and equipped with “proper safety measures”.