IFJ Demands Government Action Following Attacks on Newspaper offices in Baghdad

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has today demanded that the Iraqi government takes urgent action following attacks by a suspected Shiite militia on the offices of newspapers in Baghdad on Monday morning, 1st April 2013. The previous day newspapers had published a story on a Shiite cleric.

"We condemn this use of violence against the offices of journalists in Baghdad which shows the risks our colleagues in Iraq continue to face in their daily work," said IFJ President Jim Boumelha. "We call on the government in Iraq to take swift action to bring those people who are behind the attacks to justice".

According to some media reports, gunmen attacked the offices of four independent newspapers, smashing equipment and windows, attacking the staff and reportedly throwing one journalist off a roof.  

The Iraqi Journalists' Syndicate (IJS) has also condemned the attacks and urged the Iraqi authorities to find and punish those who ordered the violent attacks.

The IFJ is marking the 10th anniversary of the war in Iraq next week with a series of events across the globe. "The latest incidents in Baghdad show that the violence against media shows no signs of abating," added Beth Costa, IFJ General Secretary.  

"Iraq continues to be ranked among the most dangerous countries in the world to be a journalist. Further action is required to protect the safety of journalists there." 

For more information, please contact IFJ on + 32 2 235 22 07
The IFJ represents more than 600.000 journalists in 134 countries