Murders of Somali journalists go unpunished – watchdog

A prominent media watchdog has declared Somalia the country with the worst record of prosecuting people who kill journalists.

The US-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) said in its annual Global Impunity Index that 2018 was the fourth year in a row Somalia had topped the list.

It said impunity was “entrenched” in Somalia and 13 other countries, including Afghanistan and Colombia, where “those who seek to censor and control the media” use violence.

South Sudan and Nigeria also feature on the media watchdog’s list of places where killers of journalists go free.

“In the past decade, at least 324 journalists have been silenced through murder worldwide and in 85 percent of these cases no perpetrators have been convicted,” the report said.

The CPJ released the Impunity Index ahead of the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists on 2 November.

On Saturday (27 October) gunmen shot dead Somali radio journalist Abdullahi Mire Hashi near Mogadishu, making him the third media worker to be killed in Somalia this year.

More than 25 other journalists have been killed in the country with “complete impunity” over the last decade, according to CPJ.

Freedom House says the Horn of Africa nation is one of the most dangerous places for journalists.

Farah Yussuf is a Digital Reporter with Star FM Kenya. He holds a bachelor of arts degree in journalism from Masinde Muliro University.

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