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Afghanistan Journalists Sign Open Letter Urging World To Take Action

By FnF Correspondent | PUBLISHED: 30, Aug 2021, 18:24 pm IST | UPDATED: 13, Sep 2021, 18:21 pm IST

Afghanistan Journalists Sign Open Letter Urging World To Take Action New DelhiSeveral Afghanistan-based journalists, camerapersons, and photographers have penned an open letter urging the United Nations, the international community, human rights organisations, and media-support platforms to protect them against threats they face after the Taliban take over. 

The letter was published on Saturday and signed by 150 reporters, Afghan-based TOLOnews reported.

Considering the increasing challenges and threats facing media workers, as well as their families and property, we urge the United Nations and donor countries to take action to save our lives and our families," the journalist plead in the letter, as quoted by the local news media.  

"At this crucial moment, the world instead of watching must take action to save our lives and those of our families," reporter Ahmad Navid Kawosh stated. 

"We are living in uncertainty. We do not know what will happen to us and our future. The world countries must hear our voice," reporter Rafiullah Nikzad wrote, as quoted by TOLOnews.

The Taliban takeover in Kabul on August 15 has thrown the nation into crisis with journalists, especially women professionals facing uncertainty over their life and work under the ultra-conservative regime. 

While the Taliban claimed to have allowed women to work, several anecdotes suggest a contradictory ground reality.

According to TOLOnews, Nazifa Ahmadi, a female reporter, is among dozens of female professionals unable to work as her media company has shut down.  

Being the only breadwinner, she is faced with the existential challenge of not knowing how to feed her family.

"The fate of numerous reporters is not known. The Taliban should let female media staff work because most of them are the only breadwinners for their families," she said.  

Journalists are among the thousands of Afghans who can be seen desperately rushing to the Kabul airport to escape the Taliban regime. 

According to the local media, three Afghan journalists were among those killed in the serial attacks on Kabul international airport last Thursday.

Facing grave uncertainty over their livelihood, Afghan media workers have also initiated a social media campaign asking for international organisations to address their challenges and make their fates clear.

A number of owners and officials of media companies state that their access to information has been severely limited following the collapse of the Ghani administration, TOLOnews reported.  

Some say that no official source is responding to media inquiries.  

"The situation for media is worrying. No one is responding to us and this situation has created many obstacles for reporters," said Ehsanullah Sahak, editor in chief of Kabul News as quoted by the Afghan-based media organisation.  

The concerns come even as Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid announced that media would be allowed to continue activities while observing Islamic law.

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