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Iraqi newspaper editor gunned down in Baghdad

(RSF/IFEX) - 26 November 2012 - Reporters Without Borders condemns the murder of Iraqi journalist Samir Sheikh Ali, the editor of a website called Al-Jamahir Al-Baghdadiya (The Baghdad Masses), who was shot three times in the chest while driving his car in the central Baghdad district of Sheikh Omar on 17 November.

According to the information obtained by the Journalistic Freedoms Observatory (JFO), a Reporters Without Borders partner organization, Ali's death was directly linked to his journalistic activities.

“Our thoughts go out to Ali's family and colleagues,” Reporters Without Borders said. “We urge the Iraqi authorities to conduct an independent investigation into all the circumstances surrounding this murder and to bring both the perpetrators and instigators to justice.”

The media freedom organization added: “The authorities have a duty to protect journalists and to combat the impunity enjoyed by those who try to silence the media.”

Aged 61, married and the father of three children, Ali had worked for many news media before becoming the editor of The Baghdad Masses three years ago. He was also a human rights activist and staunch defender of fundamental freedoms including freedom of information.

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