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UN Deplores Killing Of Cameraman In Kashmir, India

Killing Of Cameraman Sparks UN Concern For Safety Of Journalists In Kashmir

New York, Sep 16 2008 10:10AM

The United Nations agency tasked with promoting press freedom has deplored the death of a local television cameraman in Indian-administered Kashmir, and voiced concern for the safety of journalists in the area.

Javed Ahmed Mir, 35, was shot while covering a demonstration near Bagh-e-Mehtab on 13 August.

“I trust that the authorities will do all in their power to shed light on this crime and that the condition necessary for the media to exercise its functions be improved,” said the Director-General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Koïchiro Matsuura.

“It is essential for democracy and rule of law that journalists be able to exercise their profession freely and contribute to informed debate. Stifling debate only breeds frustration and violence, which is why I urge the authorities to support journalists in Kashmir,” he added.

According to Reporters without Borders, at least 32 journalists have been beaten by members of the security forces since the start of the demonstrations a few weeks ago, and about 10 of them have been hospitalized.

Three journalists are reported to have been attacked by demonstrators.

ENDS

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