Thursday, April 5, 2012

IFJ Condemns Bomb Blast at Media Event in Somalia

5 Apr 2012 13:12 Africa/Lagos

IFJ Condemns Bomb Blast at Media Event in Somalia

DAKAR, April 5, 2012/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) today strongly condemned the bomb attack which killed eight people and left many more injured, including at least seven journalists. The Islamic group Al-Shabab claimed responsibility for the blast which went off at the National Theatre building where a ceremony was taking place to mark the first anniversary of the re-launch of the Somali public television.

“This is an appalling attack on unsuspecting innocent people which shows Al-Shabab's total disregard to human life,” said Gabriel Baglo, IFJ Africa Director. “The militants will gain nothing from the mindless violence and senseless loss of life which only serve to further alienate the Somali people.”

According to the National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ), an IFJ affiliate, the attack was carried out by a female attacker who blew herself up at the event in Mogadishu attended by Somali dignitaries, including the Prime Minister Abdiweli Mohamed Ali. He was unhurt but the President of Somali Football Federation (SFF), Said Mohamud Nur (Said Mugambo) and the President of National Olympic Committee (NOC) of Somalia , Adan Haji Yabarow (Wiish) were among the people who lost their lives.

NUSOJ said that the seven journalists who were injured in the attack were Deqo Mohamed Ahmed (Radio Mogadishu), Ahmed Ali Kahiye (Radio Kulmiye), Mohamed Nur Sharif (Bar Kulan Radio), Ayan Abdulle Gure (S24 TV), Hamdi Mohamed Hassan (Somali Channel TV), Mulki Hassan Hayle (Royal TV), and Said Shire Warsame (Shabelle TV).

The Union condemned the bombing which it described as an attack on press freedom in Somalia .

“This was essentially a media event and we therefore view this as a direct attack on the media and journalists,” said NUSOJ Secretary General Omar Faruk Osman.

Source: International Federation of Journalists (IFJ)

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