According to the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), journalists in Afghanistan are not safe, and violence against them persists. The office calls on the Taliban to stop harassing journalists and end extremely harsh and severe measures.

On Wednesday, 1st July, UNAMA tweeted asking on the Taliban to release all detained media workers and journalists, and to stop torturing, arbitrarily detaining, and threatening journalists.

At the same time, the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) demanded that the Taliban be held accountable for the torture of journalist Roman Karimi and for the detention of his driver.

The CPJ urged that Jamaluddin Deldar, the head of the radio station, and Mirza Hassani, a former owner of a local radio station, be released unconditionally as soon as possible.

On May 19, while reporting a women’s demonstration, Roman Karimi and his driver were detained and tortured by the Taliban.

The Taliban, according to Steven Butler, Asia Program Coordinator for Committee to Protect Journalists, should immediately release the detained journalists and investigate the attack on Roman Karimi and the detention of his driver.

He highlighted arbitrary detention and torture as indicators of Afghanistan’s deteriorating media environment, emphasizing that the process of access to information and an open society was in grave danger.

According to the Afghanistan Journalists Center, at least 80 journalists have been detained and tortured by the Taliban in the last nine months.

According to other figures, over 45 percent of journalists have quit since the Taliban assumed power, either due to threats or to leave the country.

The professionals in this field believe the void left by the media and journalists is always filled with violence and intimidation, plunging society into the abyss of darkness.

Author

  • Saqalain Eqbal is an Online Editor for Khaama Press. He is a Law graduate from The American University of Afghanistan (AUAF).