The International Federation
of Journalists (IFJ) and its local affiliate,
the Afghan Independent Journalists’ Association (AIJA),
reiterate their concerns for ensuring the safety of media personnel working in Afghanistan
in the run-up to presidential elections on August 20.
A photographer and a cameraman for the Associated Press (AP) were
seriously injured when a road-side bomb exploded near Kandahar, in Afghanistan’s
south, on August 12.
The two journalists,
identified by AP as Islamabad-based Spanish reporter Emilio Morenati, 40, and
Indonesian reporter Andi Jatmiko, 44, were travelling with United States military personnel.
At a national assembly of journalists’ leaders in Kabul
in late July, IFJ General Secretary Aidan White said journalists in Afghanistan were coming under
pressure as political tensions mounted ahead of the elections.
“Journalists play a crucial role in the smooth execution of democratic
elections by providing as much information as possible to the public to inform
their decision-making,” IFJ Asia-Pacific Director Jacqueline Park said.
“While the situation in Afghanistan is marked by complexity and conflict, this devastating incident underscores the
importance of media owners and managers ensuring that local and foreign
journalists assigned to report in the country are provided with all necessary
protection measures and safety guidance,
as well as comprehensive insurance.”
The IFJ joins AIJA in acknowledging the courage of all local and foreign
media whose fair and accurate reporting is crucial to Afghanistan’s democratic success.
information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +612 9333 0919
represents over 600,000 journalists in
120 countries worldwide