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Kurdish journalist survives assassination attempt after receiving death threats; several other journalists threatened

(RSF/IFEX) - Reporters Without Borders condemns a shooting attack on journalist Amanaj Khalil, of the weekly "Rudaw", on 1 August 2008 in Kani Kardatt, a region to the west of Sulaymaniyah in Iraqi Kurdistan. Khalil, who was not injured, had reportedly been getting threats because of one of his articles.

"This attempt to murder Khalil should be taken seriously by the authorities in Kurdistan," Reporters Without Borders said. "The death threats he had received show that it was linked to his work as a journalist. Measures must be taken to protect him and other journalists who have been threatened."

Khalil was at the wheel of his car when gunmen aboard a black Opel opened fire on him and then fled. Khalil said he had received phone calls from a radical Islamic group threatening to kill him - apparently because of an article about the links between a Kurdish Islamic organisation and the group Ansar el Islam.

Souran Mama Hama of the magazine "Leven" was gunned down by four men in a car outside his (home in Iraqi Kurdistan on 21 July after getting death threats. Other journalists who have received threats include Souran Omar, the publisher of the magazine "Rega", Nehad Jami and Kursat Abd El Rahman.

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