The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has declared 2023 as the deadliest year for journalists in war-torn countries in its annual assessment.
It stated in a press release of that Afghanistan, Syria, Cameroon and Ukraine have each witnessed at least two murders of journalists.
UNESCO wrote that the number of journalists killed in war zones has doubled compared to the last three years.
Audrey Azoulay, UNESCO Director-General, in this press release said: “I pay tribute to all of these media professionals and reiterate my call to all actors involved to mobilize the necessary means to guarantee the protection of journalists as civilians, as stipulated in international law.”
But the Islamic Emirate rejected this assessment and said that no journalist has been killed in Afghanistan in the past year.
Zabihullah Mujahid said: "In the past year, no journalist has died, and Israel has the highest number and statistics in this area, which martyred a large number of journalists in Gaza, and this crime is the responsibility of the countries that support Israel and they should be questioned. In Afghanistan We have no casualties from the media and media people.”
Meanwhile, some journalists asked the Islamic Emirate to take better care of the problems of journalists in the country.
"Since journalists in the current situation are a reliable bridge between the people and the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, our request is that in terms of ensuring the security of journalists and providing work facilities in the city and in news centers with the journalists of the Islamic Emirate, we should have serious cooperation so that journalists can do their work efficiently and with a peaceful mind," said Daud Nazari, a journalist.
“We want the current government to pay serious attention to the safety of journalists,” said Sayed Hashem Kashefi, a journalist.
The Afghan Independent Journalists Association (AIJA) called this report regrettable and said that they are hopeful that the problems of journalists will be solved in the upcoming year.
“We are trying to make 2024 a good year for Afghan journalists and media,” said Farhad Behroz, deputy head of Afghan Independent Journalists Association.
Haqmal Zia, the acting Deputy Minister of Information and Culture, said: “This number decreased year by year and this year there were limited cases, most of which were personal and family enmities. Apart from that, we did not have any cases where our journalists were in danger.”
Earlier, the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) said that journalists and media workers should have immunity and the crimes committed against them should be investigated.