Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Journalist Assassinated in Somalia

Hassan Osman Abdi, 29, a journalist and director of the Shabelle Media Network, a private radio and television network, was shot dead by unidentified gunmen on Saturday at his home in Mogadishu, Somalia, according to local sources cited by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

“The murder of Hassan Osman Abdi is a severe blow to a country where the media have paid a heavy price for exercising the human right to freedom of expression,” said Irina Bokova, UNESCO’s Director-General, in a press release.  “The death of journalists undermines the right of people to be kept informed. Somalia’s reconciliation and reconstruction will not take place without securing respect for these two rights.”  She urged the Somali authorities to take urgent measures to improve the safety of journalists and investigate the murder of Mr. Abdi, who was reportedly shot by five gunmen after arriving home from Radio Shabelle, where he worked on political issues.

Some 21 Somali journalists and other media professionals have been listed on UNESCO’s dedicated web page ‘UNESCO Remembers Assassinated Journalists.’

(Adapted from a UN Press Release)

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