International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) welcomes the release of three
reporters who were briefly detained by US-led NATO forces in Kunar province in
to information received from IFJ affiliate the Afghan Independent Journalists’
Association (AIJA), Syed Abdullah Nezami of the Al Jazeera Arabic news channel
and Sadullah Sahil and Zabihullah of the Afghan TV News Service, were detained
on February 20 in a remote part of the province where a NATO air strike had
reportedly killed up to 50 civilians over the weekend.
reporters were investigating the event when they were taken in by NATO forces for
allegedly not carrying proper credentials. However, the AIJA has established
that all three had their identity cards at the time they were apprehended. They
were released two days later.
the reporters revealed to the AIJA he has grounds to suspect those who arrested
him were actively seeking to suppress the truth about the alleged death of
civilians in the air strike.
“The IFJ joins
the AIJA in strongly deploring the effort to stop reporters from doing their
job and ascertaining the truth behind contested official claims”, IFJ Asia-Pacific Director Jacqueline Park said.
deaths have been a sensitive issue in Afghanistan and we believe that a
free media that is able to report accurately and without fear will serve the
cause of peace and reconciliation”.
information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific
on +612 9333 0919
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