Picture Credit: AP/ShutterStock/RepresentativeImage
The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has urged the global community to speed all evacuation and rescue operations for media workers in Afghanistan who are in "grave danger" following the Taliban takeover. This comes after Taliban insurgents raided the residences of at least three workers of German public broadcaster Deutsche Welle (DW) and a freelance journalist and interpreter a few days ago.
At least homes of three German public broadcaster Deutsche Welle employees were seized, including two who have been reporting from Afghanistan for years and are well-known in the country. According to a news release issued by the DW, many DW employees are living in great danger.
"With the Taliban takeover, the lives of DW employees and their families in Afghanistan are under acute threat," the DW said in a statement . The DW statement added that simply working for a western broadcaster was enough to make Taliban extremists want to kill them. DW provided the German Foreign Ministry with the contact information for its employees so that they could be evacuated if necessary. During the militants' search, none of the DW employees were at home.
The Taliban probed the residence of a freelance journalist and interpreter who had worked with US freelance journalist Wesley Morgan earlier this week. During their hunt, he was also not at home.
According to the Afghanistan Independent Journalists Association (AIJA), Ariana TV cameraperson Mahmoud Naimi and Pajhwok News cameraperson Babrak Amirzadeh were beaten up by Taliban militants in Jalalabad, Nangarhar province, on 18th August as they reported on a protest against the Taliban takeover in Afghanistan, according to the IFJ statement.
According to the AIJA, a Khurshid TV journalist, Ahmad Navid Kavosh, was beaten up at Hamid Karzai airport while attempting to question a Taliban member. Despite Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid's comforting statements to the press during his first press conference on 17th August, the media group claims, attacks on journalists have occurred. Although Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid pledged support for the Afghan media in his first press conference on 17th August, the situation on the ground remains difficult and traumatic for both domestic and international journalists.
Women journalists and activists, as well as journalists from the ethnic Hazara minority, are deeply worried about the status of women working in the country's media institutions. There are media accounts that indicate women journalists' concerns that they will need to bury all of their reporting accomplishments, as well as additional reports of women journalists from state television being suspended indefinitely from their positions.
(with inputs from ANI)
(Picture Credit: AP/ShutterStock/RepresentativeImage)