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Secretary General of Somali journalists' union escapes assassination attempt

NUSOJ Secretary General Omar Faruk Osman (right) is pictured next to Somali Minister of Internal Security Abdirisak Omar Mohamed.
NUSOJ Secretary General Omar Faruk Osman (right) is pictured next to Somali Minister of Internal Security Abdirisak Omar Mohamed.

NUSOJ

This statement was originally published by NUSOJ on 29 December 2015.

The National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) is alarmed by today's attempt to assassinate its Secretary General, Omar Faruk Osman, as he was entering the union's headquarters in Mogadishu.

At around 14:00, Omar Faruk Osman was coming back from the city centre and his vehicle was parked at the gate of the NUSOJ headquarters, waiting for the gate to be opened, when three armed men in a white sedan sprayed his vehicle with bullets. Omar's bodyguards exchanged fire with the assailants, until the attackers were overpowered and ran away from the scene. One of Omar's bodyguards and two other pedestrians on Taleex Street were seriously wounded in the attack.

“This is a vicious and cowardly murder attempt against our Secretary General Omar Faruk Osman. It is clearly aimed at intimidating our union, and it was only by good fortune that Omar Faruk escaped death,” said Abdirisak Omar Ismail, President of NUSOJ Supreme Council.

NUSOJ categorically states that it will not bow to the intimidations and dangers posed to its leadership, and shall remain defiant in executing its mandate without fear, speaking out against suppressive actions and policies against journalists and the media community.

“It is an outrage that people must risk their lives simply to represent the interests of journalists. If the Somali Government is serious about bringing peace and prosperity to Somalia it must swiftly identify the perpetrators and bring them to justice,” added Ismail. “We do not need empty promises anymore”.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
What other IFEX members are saying
  • IFJ shocked by the attempted murder of the secretary general of its union in Somalia

    “This is the latest example of the continued threats to journalists and media workers in Somalia and the ongoing attempts to undermine press freedom and freedom of expression,” said IFJ General Secretary, Anthony Bellanger. "The IFJ welcomes the investigation initiated by the National Intelligence and Security Agency (NISA), but reminded them that they must act swiftly and decisively in this and all cases that have been building up for years in Somalia.”



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