Iraq: local journalist’s house shot at in east Baghdad

Photo credit: Ahmad al-Rubaye

Prominent Iraqi journalist Hiba Hussain reported that her house in east Baghdad was shot at by a group of unidentified armed men on Friday 8 September. No occupants were injured. 

The IFJ and its affiliate the IJS condemned the attack and called on the Iraqi authorities to conduct a thorough and transparent investigation to bring those responsible to justice.  

Hiba Hussain, an editor at Iraqi National News Agency (NINA) and vice president of the Iraqi Journalist Syndicate’s (IJS) youth section said that a number of bullet holes had penetrated her front door, windows and various walls of the house and that her car windows had been smashed on Friday night around 1:30am.  

Hussain’s father reported the attack to the district police station but the on-duty officer refused to register the case under the pretext that it was the end of his shift. The investigation did then not take place until Saturday morning where police failed to examine the area where the attack took place. 

“The inaction shown by local police cannot be tolerated”, said IFJ General Secretary Anthony Bellanger. “If this case is not properly investigated, it sends a message to all would-be perpetrators that violent attacks on journalists can be carried out with impunity in Iraq”. 

“We call on the Iraqi government to set up a robust mechanism to investigate attacks on journalists and bring perpetrators to justice.” 

According to IFJ statistics, Iraq is the second most deadly country for journalists in 2017, with 7 journalists killed this year alone. The IFJ urges all journalists to operate with extreme caution when reporting in Iraq. 

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