A Somali journalist who was shot by unknown assailants last week has succumbed to his injuries and passed away, taking the death toll for journalists in the country to 17 this year.
Mohamed Mohamud Turyare, became the fifth journalist from independent Shabelle radio and television station to be attacked this year when he was shot after leaving a mosque on October 21.
He is the 17th journalist to be killed in Somalia in 2012, which has become the deadliest year ever for members of the media in the war-torn Afircan nation.
Turyare’s colleague, Mohamed Bashir said: “Turyare died in hospital last night, his health condition was not that bad until yesterday afternoon, but then he suddenly deteriorated.”
"There were plans to evacuate him for medical treatment outside Somalia, but tragically he left us too soon, like the other friends that we lost before him," he added.
DCMF had been told earlier in the week that the journalist was recovering well following the shooting and medical treatment. However, the rapid deterioration in his condition came as a tragic surprise.
"Turyare is no more, but we wait desperately for the time when those who kill innocent journalists face justice," said Adan Molaim, a relative of the deceased.
Secretary-general of the National Union of Somali Journalist (NUSOJ), Mohamed Ibrahim said: ““We are shocked by the death of our colleague, late Mohamed Mohamoud, who survived an assassination attempt last week.”
“We extend our sympathy and condolences to the family, friends and colleague of late Mohamed,” he added.
DCMF condemns attack, urges Somali government to take action
Doha Centre for Media Freedom (DCMF) has repeatedly called for the authorities to take steps to eradicate the culture of impunity which means that journalists are targeted regularly and those responsible are not brought to justice.
DCMF has been working with journalists and organisations in Somalia to provide safety equipment and training, but these measures need to be supported by the government, who must take a stand against those attacking journalists.
“The centre repeats its calls for the government to do everything within its powers to bring those responsible to justice and ensure that they are not left free to attack others in the future.
The death toll of journalists in Somalia this year has been increasing on a monthly basis, and the culture of impunity which abounds in the country poses a significant and dangerous threat to journalism and media freedom.
President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud has the opportunity to make a stand for human rights and media freedom by ensuring that justice is done in these, and other unsolved cases in Somalia by launching comprehensive investigations. By setting a precedent and creating a deterrent for those who target the media, he will improve the conditions for journalists throughout the country.”
Source: DCMF, AFP.