Afghan Journalist Is Killed in Latest Attack on Media Figures

Afghan Journalist Is Killed in Latest Attack on Media Figures

Afghan Journalist Is Killed in Latest Attack on Media Figures

Afghan Journalist Is Killed in Latest Attack on Media Figures

Mr. Siawash’s father, Dawood, has posted the same message on social media nearly every day since his son’s death: “The government should point out the terrorist killer of Yama Siawash, otherwise the government itself is the killer.”

The Taliban often use unclaimed attacks to spread fear and undercut the Afghan government — all while refraining from large-scale attacks in cities under a February agreement with the United States that encouraged all sides to reduce violence.

Instead, the insurgent group has relegated its violence mostly to the countryside, especially in offensives in the country’s south, and has often used the targeted killings for propaganda purposes.

From July to September, unclaimed insurgent attacks in Afghanistan were up by more than 50 percent from the previous quarter, accounting for nearly half of civilian deaths, according to a U.S. government watchdog report released last month. In November, at least 200 civilians were killed across the country.

In 2018, a particularly brutal year for news media workers in Afghanistan, 15 people were killed, according to a report from Reporters Without Borders, including nine journalists who were killed in twin bombings in Kabul claimed by the Islamic State affiliate in the country. Five media workers were killed in the country in 2019.

While endemic corruption and a flailing economy continue to plague Afghanistan, its local news outlets have flourished in the wake of the 2001 U.S. invasion.

Zaki Daryabi, the editor of Afghanistan’s Etilaatroz newspaper, was recently awarded this year’s Transparency International’s Anti-Corruption Award for a series of investigative reports into the government’s mismanagement.

Zabihullah Ghazi reported from Jalalabad, Afghanistan, and Thomas Gibbons-Neff from Geneva. Fahim Abed and Fatima Faizi contributed reporting from Kabul, Afghanistan.


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