The International Federation of
Journalists (IFJ) today joined its Iraqi affiliate, the Iraqi Syndicate of
Journalists (ISJ), in paying tribute to pioneering TV broadcaster, Mouafac al
Ani, who was killed by a grenade attack in western Baghdad last Monday, 6 May,
"We all mourn the tragic death of
the pioneering and inspirational journalist Mouafac al Ani which is another
reminder of the risks our colleagues in Iraq continue to face every day,"
said Jim Boumelha, IFJ President. "Those who deliberately seek to harm journalists
need to be condemned unequivocally and hunted down to answer for their crimes."
According to the IJS, an
unidentified gunman threw a grenade at worshipers when they were leaving the
Ihsan Mosque in Baghadad's Mansour district after evening prayers on Monday,
killing Mr al-Ani and his brother, Muzaffar al-Ani. Four other people were
killed in the blast and 13 were injured.
The IJS has condemned the
broadcaster's assassination and has called for an investigation, stating that criminals
in Iraq continue to "bury the truth" and "shut mouths" to achieve their
objectives. Mr Al-Ani was born in Baghdad in 1941. He received a bachelor's
degree from the University of Baghdad and started his work on local radio in
the early sixties.
The IFJ has expressed its concerned at the spate of recent attacks
against journalists in Baghdad and urged journalists to ensure safety precautions.
"We are increasingly concerned about the escalation of violence against
journalists in Iraq in recent months and we urge journalists not to take risks
in dangerous zones," said Mr Boumelha. "No story is worth a journalist's life
and people should not take unnecessary risks to their safety and even
For more information, please contact IFJ on + 32 2 235 22 17
The IFJ represents more than 600.000 journalists in 134 countries