The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) is alarmed by the disappearance of a Nepalese journalist and subsequent reports of his death.
According to an IFJ affiliate the Federation of Nepalese Journalists (FNJ), Kanchanpur-based freelance journalist Prakash Singh Thakuri was abducted from his home on July 5 and has not been seen since.
On July 8, a group calling itself the National Republican Army Nepal (NRAN) sent an email to a Kailali-based newspaper taking credit for Thakuri’s abduction and revealing they had killed him as he was trying to escape, the FNJ reports.
The email reportedly said Thakuri was abducted for his involvement in pro-monarch activities and also threatened to take action against other pro-monarchs.
“These are deeply concerning allegations and the IFJ has grave fears for the safety of Thakuri,” IFJ Asia Pacific Director Jacqueline Park said.
According to the FNJ, police have arrested Maoist Pomlal Sharma, who visited Thakuri on the morning of his disappearance, in connection with the abduction.
The Maoists have reportedly denied any involvement in the abduction, while Pomlal has alleged a member of the Young Communist League was responsible.
“The Nepalese government must take swift action to secure Thakuri’s whereabouts and ensure he is returned safe and unharmed,” Park said.
For further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +61 2 9333 0919
The IFJ represents over 600,000 journalists in more than 115 countries