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Islamic State kills another Iraqi journalist, second in two days

Islamic State seized Mosul in June, and reporting from the city has been difficult since then.

Jihadi group Islamic State murdered another Iraqi journalist Monday in Mosul (in the northern province of Nineveh), just two days after publicly executing an Iraqi journalist in Samara (in Salahuddin province).

The latest victim was Mohanad Al-Aqidi, the Sada news agency’s Mosul correspondent and a former presenter on now closed Al-Mowseliya TV. Kidnapped in July on his way to Dohuk province, he was shot several times in the head in Al-Ghazlani camp, in southern Mosul.

Reporters Without Borders said it was horrified by the Jihadi group’s constant crimes of violence, whose victims have included many journalists. “Islamic State is pursuing a policy of indiscriminate criminal violence that shows no pity towards journalists and does not hesitate to kidnap, torture and murder them,” said Reporters Without Borders programme director Lucie Morillon. “Media personnel need the support and protection of the local authorities more than ever.”

After Al-Aqidi was killed, his body was taken to a forensic medical centre in Mosul and then handed over to his family. A source close to the family said the body bore the marks of torture and there were several gunshot injuries to the head. He also said that Al-Aqidi had been detained in Badush prison, which Islamic State is using to hold thousands of the prisoners it has taken since the start of its offensive in Iraq.

His murder came two days after Islamic State’s public execution of TV cameraman Raad Mohamed Al-Azaoui’s in Samara.

The number of Islamic State’s atrocities is clearly increasing in Iraq although the fate of some detained journalists is not clear. According to the Journalistic Freedoms Observatory (JFO), Islamic State has killed two Iraqi journalists and has arrested (or kidnapped) nine others in Mosul. Meanwhile in Syria, Islamic State has killed two US journalists and eight Syrian journalists, and is currently holding one US journalist and at least nine Syrian journalists.

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) too reiterated its deep fear for the safety of journalists reporting in Syria and Iraq following the brutal murder of Raad al-Azzawi. “We send out deepest condolences to the family and colleagues of the journalist Raad al-Azzawi who refused to let IS undermine his values and violate his profession,” said IFJ President Jim Boumelha.

“Local journalists in Iraq and Syria continue to bare the greatest burden of the IS war of terror, with many journalists living with intimidation, abuse and torture, while many others are imprisoned. International action must be taken to protect these local journalists who are risking their lives every day to ensure the truth is told.”

IFJ also joined international condemnation of the latest propaganda video issued by IS which again features British journalist John Cantlie delivering a script under duress while aware that his life is under threat. “This latest video once again shows John Cantlie being forced to deliver a message to deliver IS propaganda knowing that his life is on the line. To use a journalist as political fodder is an abhorrent action and we join international condemnation of this act,” said Boumelha.

He added: “The latest IS actions are part of the continued to intimidate and strike fear into journalists covering the region and to prevent them from reporting the truth. International governments must stand up and protect journalists so they can continue to do their jobs.”

Date posted: October 15, 2014 Last modified: May 23, 2018 Total views: 6