Director General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) [official website], Irina Bokova [official website], expressed her concern [press release] Tuesday over the murder of Somali journalist Ahmed Addow Anshur, who was killed [ABC News report] last week. Anshur was shot in Mogadishu, Somalia, but the perpetrator is still unidentified and at large. According to the National Union of Somali Journalists [advocacy website], he was the third journalist from Radio Shabelle [media website] to be murdered this year and the nineteenth [UNESCO list] since 2008. Bokova urged local authorities to investigate the murder and bring the shooter to justice.
Human rights journalists and media workers around the world are facing harassment and threats without adequate protection by local authorities. Earlier this month Amnesty International [advocacy website] urged [JURIST report] the Sudanese government to cease its press censorship. The government engaged in such activities by seizing newspapers from the printing press or arresting journalists for publishing controversial stories. In early May UNESCO expressed concern over the murder of a Mexican journalist who was found in Veracruz despite the effort by the Mexican government to protect [JURIST reports] this group through legislation. In March UN Special Rapporteur Margaret Sekaggya [official website] outlined [JURIST report] the risks and challenges faced by human rights journalists and media workers and called for heightened protection. In September Bokova condemned [JURIST report] Syria for its continued practice of torturing and detaining journalists in an effort to undermine the freedom of expression.