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Reporter injured in shootout; journalists threatened

(PPF/IFX) - Ehsan Kohati, a senior reporter for the Waqt News TV channel, was shot and injured while covering a Muharram rally, on November 27, 2011, in Karachi, the capital city of the Sindh province of Pakistan. Irfan Ahmed, another Waqt News reporter, told PPF that Kohati was hit by two bullets, one in the chest and another in the abdomen. Kohati was rushed to a nearby hospital where he received immediate treatment and is in stable condition.

Eight people, including Kohati, were injured and two were killed in the attack on a rally of Shiite Muslim mourners on the first day of the Islamic calendar month of Muharram.

Meanwhile, in a separate incident, the banned Baloch Musallah Defa Army (BMDA) militant organisation threatened six journalists in the Khuzdar district of Pakistan's southern Balochistan province on November 25.

According to press reports, in a phone call to the Naushki Press Club BMDA spokesman Mir Jang Baloch said the organisation will target journalists who are working as informers for the Baloch Republican Army and Baloch Liberation Army separatist groups. Jang also threatened Khuzdar Press Club president Nabeel Gurnani for allowing his club to be used for "negative activities."

The journalists who were threatened included Nabeel Gurnani, a correspondent for the Express News TV channel and president of the Khuzdar Press Club; Abdul Haq Baloch, a correspondent with the ARY News TV channel; Abdullah Khidrani, a correspondent for the KTN News TV channel and the daily "Kawaish"; Munir Noor, a correspondent with the daily "Balochistan News"; and Abdullah Shahwani, a correspondent for the Aaj TV channel.

Following the threats, journalists launched a protest outside the Khuzdar Press Club. They said that the new threats are alarming because three Khuzdar-based journalists have been killed for their reporting since June 2010. On November 28, the protesting journalists left for Quetta to stage a demonstration in front of the Quetta Press Club.
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