|A 2009 photograph of Mohamed Ibrahim Rageh, the latest journalist to be killed in Mogadishu (NUSOJ)
Radio and television journalist Mohamed Ibrahim Rageh is the fourth media professional to be killed this year in Somali.
Doha Centre for Media Freedom has condemned the murder of a Somali journalist in Mogadishu, expressing concern at the continuing violence targeted towards members of the media and the high numbers of journalists being killed there.
Mohamed Ibrahim Rageh, who worked for Somali National Television (SNTV) and Radio Mogadishu was shot by attackers outside his home on Sunday evening.
His death brings the number of Somali journalists killed in 2013 to four, representing a worrying continuation of last year’s death toll, which at 18, was the heaviest in the country’s history.
Director of Radio Mogadishu, Abdirahim Isse Addow said: “Mohamed completed his work and was taken to his home around 5pm and after a while we were informed of the bad news of his death.”
“He was a very good journalist and we mourn for his loss,” he added.
Rageh had fled Mogadishu in 2009 and was living in exile in Kampala, Uganda until he recently decided to return home.
The National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) condemned the murder and sent condolences to Rageh’s families, friends and colleagues.
Secretary general of NUSOJ, Mohamed Ibrahim said: “We condemn the murder in the strongest terms possible and call for an urgent investigation in the murder case.”
“We mourn for his loss and send my sincere condolences to the families, friends and colleague of late Mohamed,” he added.
Fourth Somali journalist to be killed this year
Rageh is the fourth journalist to be killed in Somalia this year, following the assassination of Abdihared Osman Adan in January, the death of Mohamed Ali Nuxurkey in a suicide bomb blast outside the national theatre in Mogadishu in March, and the murder of female journalist, Rahma Abdelkadir in the same month.
Earlier this year, the Somali government made a commitment to combat impunity, offering a reward of around $50,000 for anyone providing information which could lead to the arrest of journalist killer’s.
This was followed by the arrest and conviction of Adan Sheikh Abdi Sheikh Hussein, a member of Al Shabaab who confessed to the murder of Hassan Yusuf Absuge and was himself handed the death penalty.
Despite their efforts, there seems to be little let up in the violence against journalists, and a suicide bomb attack earlier this month which resulted in the death of a former media worker as well as two human rights activists and lawyers who worked on the recent prominent media freedom case involving journalist Abdiaziz Abdinur Ibrahim, provided a clear indication of the challenges facing Somali authorities in establishing effective institutions and guaranteeing human rights.
DCMF calls for defence of right to information
Doha Centre for Media Freedom has called on the Somali government to continue to step up its efforts to protect journalists and bring those responsible for their deaths to justice.
As long as the culture of impunity persists in Somalia, journalists will continue to be targeted and citizens will be denied their basic human right of access to information.
Journalists in Somalia continue to display incredible courage and bravery in carrying out their work in one of the most challenging countries for media workers around the world.
After a tragic 2012 in which 18 journalists lost their lives, DCMF was hoping to witness an improved situation for media professionals in 2013. However, the worrying trend of journalists being targeted in violent attacks, the bloodshed and continuous loss of life continue to pose a significant threat to press freedom and Somali society at large.
DCMF is urging the authorities to take all the necessary steps to ensure that their safety is protected, that any incidents involving journalists are fully investigated and that those responsible are brought to justice.
Source: DCMF, NUSOJ
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