Brussels [Belgium], August 20 (ANI): The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has urged for the necessary evacuation of media workers at critical risk in Afghanistan and asked the international community to expedite all evacuation and rescue operations.
This comes a few days after Taliban militants carried out search operations in homes of at least three employees of German public broadcaster Deutsche Welle (DW) and a freelance journalist and interpreter.
Houses of at least three of its staffers, who have been reporting from Afghanistan for years and are well known in Afghanistan, were raided. It reported that many DW staffers are living in grave risk, according to a press statement issued by the DW.
"With the Taliban takeover, the lives of DW employees and their families in Afghanistan are under acute threat," the DW statement said. The DW statement further cautioned that just working for a western broadcaster was sufficient reason for Taliban militants to target them. DW sent contact details of its staff to the German Foreign Ministry for necessary evacuation. None of the DW employees were in their home during the militants' search.
Earlier this week, the Taliban also searched home of a freelance journalist and interpreter, who had worked with US freelance journalist Wesley Morgan. He was also not home during their search.
The Afghanistan Independent Journalists Association (AIJA), an IFJ affiliate, also reported that Ariana TV cameraperson Mahmoud Naimi and Pajhwok News cameraperson Babrak Amirzadeh were beaten up by Taliban militants in Jalalabad, in Nangarhar province, on August 18 as they reported on a protest against the Taliban takeover in Afghanistan, IFJ statement said.
The AIJA also informed that Ahmad Navid Kavosh, a Khorshid TV journalist, was beaten up at Hamid Karzai airport while trying to interview a Taliban member, it added.
According to the media group, the attacks on journalists have taken place despite reassuring messages towards the press by Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid during his first press conference on August 17.
Although Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid announced support for media in Afghanistan during his first press conference on August 17, the situation on the ground remains tense and traumatic for both domestic and international media.
Women journalists and media activists remain gravely concerned at the plight of women working in media outlets in the country, as well as journalists from the ethnic Hazara minority.
There are media accounts that reveal the concern from women journalists who feel they will need to bury all the achievements of their reporting, as well as other reports of women journalists from state television being suspended from their duties indefinitely. (ANI)