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Somalia10 May 2007

Radio reporter killed in shootout at arms market in Puntland

Reporters Without Borders voiced deep regret today at the news that radio reporter Mohammed Abdullahi Khalif was killed in a shootout on 5 May at an arms market in Galkayo, in the northeastern autonomous region of Puntland.

“There is no indication so far that Khalif was directly targeted in this shooting, but there are similarities to the death of Swedish journalist Martin Adler during a demonstration in Mogadishu in June 2006,” the press freedom organisation said. “Khalif’s death is reminder that journalists in Somalia are constantly exposed to violence.”

A freelance contributor to Galkayo-based Radio Voice of Peace, Khalif had gone to the city’s arms market to do a story. The National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) said he was hit in an exchange of shots that broke out when soldiers went to the market to recover a gun that had been stolen from them.

NUSOJ secretary-general Omar Faruk Osman said: “This is a tragedy, that shows how journalists’ safety is in danger.” Khalif is the second journalist to be killed in Somalia this year. Radio Warsan presenter Ali Mohammed Omar was murdered in Baidoa in February.



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