127 Journalists and Media Workers Killed in Two Decades, Says AFJC

At least 127 journalists and media workers have been killed in Afghanistan over the last two decades. Still, judicial proceedings have not been sought for about 90% of these cases, Afghanistan Journalists Center (AFJC) says in a report.

In 2021, at least 8 journalists and media workers, including five women, were killed in targeted attacks such as suicide attacks and bombings, the AFJC added.

According to the AFJC’s report, at least 127 journalists and media workers, including 20 women, have lost their lives in the country since 2001.

Investigations of AFJC show that due to a culture of impunity, law and justice have not been served in more than 90% of these incidents.

Since the return of the Taliban to power in August 2021, the AFJC has recorded at least 245 cases of violence against journalists and media workers. These cases include arbitrary arrests, physical violence, threats and intimidation, injuries, and even deaths of media workers, AFJC’s report added.

AFJC’s findings show that at least 130 cases of temporary detention – ranging from an hour to several months – have been reported in one year of Taliban rule in the country. The report details how journalists have faced violence and threats while in detention.

AFJC has asked the Taliban to fulfill their commitment to support journalists and end the culture of impunity for crimes against journalists.

The center has added that the existence of a culture of impunity against journalists in Afghanistan, as well as the growing threat and pressure against a free press, will negatively impact society and progress in the country.