MPs call on govt to keep Afghan journalists safe

Members of the Wolesi Jirga (Lower House of Parliament) on Monday called on government to take serious measures to safeguard Afghan journalists.

Marking National Journalist Day, which falls on March 17, Mir Rahman Rahmani, Speaker of the Wolesi Jirga, said that supporting journalists is supporting freedom of speech.

“Media is fulfilling their duties, the main achievement of the government is freedom of speech and media; government should ensure journalists’ security,” said Rahmani.

Meanwhile some MPs said that the media is the fourth pillar of the current political system and government must safeguard the structure.

“Media is the fourth pillar of government and has made many sacrifices in the past two decades; the work of journalists is very hard and their rights must be preserved,” said Abdul Qader Zazai Watandost, an MP.

“Journalists have faced many challenges in Afghanistan and many journalists have become victims, we urge the government to assess cases where journalists have been killed,” said Khoshal Asefi, head of Ariana Television.

This comes as violence, especially targeted killings, against journalists in Afghanistan has in the past few months increased significantly.

Recently three female employees from a radio station in Nangarhar province were killed by unknown gunmen. Daesh claimed responsibility.

This attack sparked a major outcry in the country.