Taliban released local journalist in Herat
Photo: Social Media

Journalist released after 10 months in Taliban custody

Afghanistan Independent Journalists Association confirmed on Tuesday that the Taliban has released journalist, Khalid Qaderi, from prison in the western Herat province.

Khalid Qaderi, a reporter for Radio Nawroz in Herat, was arrested by Taliban intelligence agents (Istikhbarat), who kept his whereabouts unknown for several days, on 17 March 2021, after a criticising the Taliban on a Facebook post. Unprecedented in 20 years, a military court sentenced Qaderi to a year in prison.

Khalid Qaderi seen with his mother after his release from prison

Violence against journalists and media organisations has increased dramatically since the Taliban’s return to power in Afghanistan. Though it’s extremely hard to report on the situation and cases of violence against journalists under the Taliban, Afghanistan Journalists Center recorded a total of 260 cases of violence against journalists, including threats of arrest, detention, and torture, in 2022. On 29 December 2022, unknown armed men attacked a local journalist, Ehsanullah Sharifi’s, family, in the northeastern province of Kunduz, seriously wounding his wife and children.

And as a sign of further restrictions to come, the Taliban announced on Monday, that the group’s Supreme Court will soon issue a ruling against media outlets who “undermine” its rule.