The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) is outraged by the murder of Bellal Hossain Dafadar, correspondent of the Khulna-based daily newspaper Janabani, who died in hospital after being attacked and stabbed by up to five assailants on September 14.
According to local reports, Bellal Hossain Dafadar, 38, was returning home on a bicycle from a local bazaar at around 7pm when his assailants stopped him at Pinchhlapole and stabbed him, leaving him critically injured.
“The stabbing of Bellal Hossain Dafadar is sickening and such brutality can not be tolerated,” IFJ President Christopher Warren said.
“Bangladesh has an appalling record of impunity and lack of accountability for those journalists who have been murdered, assaulted or harassed,” Warren said.
A half-day hartal, or day of protest, led by the Kalaroa Reporter’s Club, was reportedly observed peacefully in Kalaroa Upazila town on September 20, protesting Bellal Hossain Dafadar’s murder and demanding the arrest and punishment of his killers.
During the hartal hours many reportedly joined the procession, closed educational institutions, shops and business establishments in support, and later rallied in front of the local Muktijoddha Sangsad office, with speakers accusing ruling party activists of being involved in the murder.
Out of a number of accused party activists only one has been arrested, local Jamaat-e-Islami BNP general secretary, Rafiquil Islam.
“Democracy depends on a free and independent media and these violent attackers need to be brought to justice,” Warren said.
“The IFJ calls upon the Bangladesh Government to intervene and put an end to the violence against journalists, before the situation further deteriorates,” he said.
For more information please contact IFJ Asia Pacific +61 2 9333 0919
The IFJ represents more than 500,000 journalists in over 115 countries