Syrian Journalist’s Murder Denounced by UN Agency

Stop killing journalists. Photo: UNESCO
Stop killing journalists. Photo: UNESCO

The United Nations agency responsible for defending the freedom of the media denounced Monday the murder of a Syrian journalist from an organization reporting on human rights abuses in the area of the country controlled by the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

“It is an unacceptable tragedy for society as a whole when those who contribute to public debate and to the free flow of information are made to pay with their lives for doing their important work,” UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Director-General Irina Bokova said of last week’s killing of Ahmad Mohamed al-Mousa in Idlib, northwest Syria.

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Mr. al-Mousa, who was murdered by unidentified masked men, was a reporter for the citizen journalist collective Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently (RBSS), which focuses on human rights violations in the region.

His murder follows that of RBSS co-founder and Executive Director Ibrahim Abdel Qader who was killed along with Fares Hammadi, Head of Production at Eye on the Homeland, a Syrian media collective, in Sanliurfa, southeast Turkey, last month – also denounced by Ms. Bokova.

UNESCO issues statements on the killing of media workers in line with Resolution 29 adopted by UNESCO Member States at the Organization’s General Conference of 1997, entitled “Condemnation of Violence against Journalists.”

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Rakesh Raman