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Kandahar journalists boycott govt, Taliban coverage

Kandahar journalists boycott govt, Taliban coverage

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Apr 26, 2018 - 13:02

KANDAHAR CITY (Pajhwok): Journalists in southern Kandahar province on Thursday announced boycotting the coverage of government and Talibaninfo-icon activities as long their colleague Abdul Manan Arghand’s killers are not arrested.

Abdul Manan Arghand, Kabulinfo-icon News TV journalist, was shot dead by unknown gunmen on his way to work in Kandahar City on Wednesday.

Kandahar-based journalists organised a gathering and condemned the murder.

Abdul Sami Ghairatmal, a representative of the journalist protection organisation NAI, told Pajhwok Afghan News that media representatives had been faced a host of problems, including harassment, naked threat and murder.

He called Arghand’s murder a tragic incident, saying the killing of journalists amounted to the murder of the freedom of expression. Ghairatmal slammed the security organs for failing to ensure the security of journalists.

The situation was no longer tolerable for reporters, he said, adding that they had decided not to cover news of Taliban and government activities as long as the killers of Manan were not detained.

Javed Ahmad Tanvir, the Kandahar Press Club head, said journalists in the province, including Arghand, had never violated professional ethics. They always upheld core journalistic principles, he maintained.

He expressed concern over threats to and murder of journalists, lamenting the authorities’ failure to give them proper security. Tanvir asked the government take concrete measures to bring Arghand’s killers to justice.

Other participants of the meeting also expressed their grave concern over the incident. All warring sides were told to spare journalists and respect their constitutionally-guaranteed freedoms. They endorsed the decision on boycotting government coverage.

No group has so far claimed responsibility for Arghand’s shooting. However, his relatives alleged the reporter was killed by Taliban, who had threatened him several times. But the Taliban have not yet commented in this regard.

On the other hand, the provincial police headquarters said three suspects had been arrested in connection with Arghand’s murder. They are under investigation.

Meanwhile, President Ghani, his CEO, the Committee to Protect Journalists and others vehemently condemned Arghand murder. They stressed the arrest of his killers and journalists’ safety.

Abdul Manan Arghand, son of Mohammad Faizani, was born in 1362 solar yearinfo-icon in the Zherai district of Kandahar. He graduated from the Zahir Shahi High School and got a bachelor’s degree from a private university in Kandahar.

Late on Wednesday, a tearful funeral ceremony was held for the deceased. He was laid to rest in his native town. Hundreds of people attended his funeral.

Arghand’s brother, Sibghatullah, told Pajhwok Afghan News the reporter had been threatened several times by some people posing as Taliban militants. The security organs were aware of the situation but took no measures for his security.

sa/mud

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