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Somali journalist dies days after targeted attack

Friends and relatives carry the body of journalist Mohamed Mohamud Tima'ade, during his funeral in Mogadishu, 27 October 2013.
Friends and relatives carry the body of journalist Mohamed Mohamud Tima'ade, during his funeral in Mogadishu, 27 October 2013.

REUTERS/Feisal Omar

The National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) expresses deep regret and shock at the death of the Mogadishu reporter of London-based Universal TV, who has succumbed to wounds sustained in a targeted attack by gunmen.

Mohamed Mohamud Tima'ade, 26, suffered internal bleeding and blood loss on 26 October; he died in Madina hospital at around 6:00pm that evening. On 22 October, gunmen had fired at Tima'ade in an attempt to kill him. Six bullets hit Tima'ade on the neck, shoulder, chest and stomach, leaving the journalist as a "dead person".

“This assassination of a young courageous and professional journalist causes deep pain for all of us,” said Omar Faruk Osman, NUSOJ Secretary General. “Journalists all around Somalia share the grief of our Universal TV colleagues. We extend our deepest condolences to Tima'ade's family and to his professional colleagues for this terrible tragedy, and we pledge to stand alongside them in defiance of the killers.”

Tima'ade had earned a name for himself with some incisive reporting on social, security and political issues in Mogadishu, which often featured in the top headlines of Universal TV. He had been at the forefront of a campaign by the independent media to fight a draft draconian media law by the Ministry of Information, Telecommunication, Posts and Transport. Tima'ade had also been taking part in campaign activities to fight for media rights in the face of state machinery.

“The work will go on and Somali journalists will not be intimidated and we will continue the fight for media freedom, media independence and journalists' safety,” said Osman. “But all of us are deeply saddened by this loss.”

When Mohamed Mohamud Tima'ade was dying in Madina Hospital, 36 journalists working for Radio Shabelle and SkyFM were detained in the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), and they received this tragic news inside the CID.

"Instead of ransacking independent media, and trying to silence independent journalists movement, government and its security operatives are expected to pursue the killers of journalists and guarantee their safety" added Osman. "Now we have a government that has a muscle to suppress the independent media, give tacit approval for police brutality and has no time and energy to tackle impunity".

Mohamed Mohamud Tima'ade is survived by his wife and a daughter. Tima'ade is the seventh media worker and sixth journalist to be killed in Somalia in this year.

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