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TV journalists targeted by Somaliland troops

(NUSOJ/IFEX) - The National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) strongly protests violent attacks against TV journalists in Las Anod town in northern Somalia by the Somaliland troops.

On 22 March 2011, Mohamed Abdinur Hashi, a journalist working for Somali Channel TV, and Mohamed Shaqale, a reporter working for Universal TV, were attacked in Las Anod by Somaliland soldiers for filing reports that the Somaliland army deemed contrary to their forces. Mohamed Abdinur Hashi was arrested, while Mohamed Shaqale is in hiding in Las Anod but his laptop computer, camera and recorders were confiscated. Somaliland forces are reportedly searching for him in Las Anod.

"This violent attack is shocking. It is intolerable that journalists who went out to cover the conflict in Las Anod were targeted for simply doing their job," said Omar Faruk Osman, NUSOJ Secretary General. "Both Puntland and Somaliland forces must allow journalists to enter, work and travel freely within the Sool and Sanaag regions without fear of attack or arrest".

NUSOJ calls on the Somaliland authorities to instruct their forces in Las Anod to release without delay Mohamed Abdinur Hashi and to return the confiscated equipment of Mohamed Shaqale, while guaranteeing his security.

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