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Journalist severely beaten by unknown individual

(Freedom Forum/IFEX) - Dinanath Baral, a reporter for "Radio Annapurna", was severely beaten up by an unknown person in Pokhara, the headquarters of the western development region of Nepal, on September 15, 2010.

Baral was en route to his office after reporting on the 15th general convention of the District Badminton Association, in the Kaski district at the time he was thrashed. According to Baral, an unknown person on a motorbike stopped him using indecent words and started beating him all of sudden. Baral sustained injuries to his face. His helmet was also damaged. He is undergoing treatment at the Fistel Hospital, Pokhara.

"As the incident took place during the course of reporting, I can say that the incident is somewhat connected to my profession, i.e., reporting," Baral told Press Freedom Monitoring Desk over the phone.

Police confiscated the motorbike that was used by assailant during the attack. However, the assailant has yet to be arrested.

Freedom Forum is concerned about the incident and asks the local authorities to investigate it and bring the guilty to justice. Deliberately attacking a journalist is a condemnable action and a curtailing of press freedom. Freedom Forum urges the security forces to ensure the journalist's safety in the coming days.

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