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Universal TV reporter shot by unidentified assailants in Somalia

The National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) today warned of continuing violence against Somali journalists, following the wounding of a television reporter in a targeted attack on Tuesday, October 22, 2013. The attack occurred in the Madina district of Mogadishu.

According to reports, armed men in a car blocked the sedan of journalist Mohamed Mohamud Tima'ade, Mogadishu reporter of London-based Universal TV and fired at him several times, in an attempt to kill him. Six bullets hit Tima'ade on the neck, shoulder, chest and stomach according to the medical doctors. He was rushed to Madina hospital where he is currently being operated on. Armed men left the journalist as a "dead person", said a Universal TV journalist.

"This was a lucky escape from yet another vicious targeted attack on a Somali journalist," said Omar Faruk Osman, NUSOJ Secretary General. "We condemn this senseless violence against Mohamed Mohamud Tima'ade, which threatens to add to the country's record of media victims who lost their lives since the beginning of the deadly war against media in 2007."

Reports emerged that one of the attackers was wounded but the identity of the perpetrators remains unconfirmed. Nevertheless, all indications point out that it was Al-Shabaab militia who carried out the operation to kill Mohamed Mohamud Tima'ade, 26.

"Our colleagues are being attacked with impunity and the government must do more," Osman said. "We will not stand by as these devastating attacks on journalists and on journalism continue."

"This latest attack upon a Somali journalist is a reminder that the main force for a new Somalia - the independent media - is under threat. [The] Somali government should protect and support them, and stop its officials who are out to weaken the independent voices in the media" added Osman.

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