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Female television reporter shot dead

(IFJ/IFEX) - The following is an IFJ media release:

IFJ shocked at murder of female reporter

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) is shocked to learn of the cold-blooded murder of an Afghani reporter last week.

Ms Shokiba Sanga Amaaj, a reporter and presenter for the Pashtu-language channel, Shamshad TV, was shot by unknown gunmen at her home on the night of June 1.

Her father has informed IFJ sources in Kabul that he is unaware of any possible motive for the murder, whether personal or political.

This leads the IFJ to believe that Ms Amaaj was targeted for the simple reason that she was a prominent media figure in a milieu that remains hostile to working women.

The IFJ has been informed that the murder of another woman journalist, Ms Shaima Raazi, who also worked with an independent TV channel, remains unresolved despite two years having passed since her death.

The IFJ extends its support and solidarity to the family of Ms Amaaj and strongly endorses the demand by the Committee to Protect Afghan Journalists (CPAJ) and the Afghanistan Independent Journalists Association (AIJA) that her murderers be brought to account.

"Women such as Ms Amaaj take enormous risks for the social and cultural renewal of Afghanistan", said Jacqueline Park, IFJ's Director for the Asia Pacific.

"We owe it to them that the culture of impunity for crimes against professional women, and the media in general, must end".

The IFJ represents over 500,000 journalists in more than 115 countries.

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