State-run TV head in Kurdistan kidnapped in ambush and beaten



    MONTREAL, July 4 /CNW Telbec/ - Reporters Without Borders today condemned
an assault on the head of public satellite television Newroz, Azad Arkuchi
after he was ambushed near Erbil, the capital of Kurdistan, by armed men in a
police car who wore military uniforms.
    Arkuchi's vehicle was brought to a halt by two other vehicles on 1st July
and his abductors bound his hands and blindfolded him before taking him to an
unknown destination where he was beaten. He was left on the road late at
night, suffering from bruising to the body.
    The television station of which he is the director comes under the
culture ministry in the regional government of Kurdistan.
    "We call for an investigation to be opened without delay to catch those
involved in this assault and to discover what role may have been played by
members of the local police", the worldwide press freedom organisation said.
"Another journalist was kidnapped for several hours in the same way in Erbil
more than a year ago. His assailants have never been identified."
    In April 2007, Nabaz Goran, who worked for several media, including the
daily Hawlati, was snatched by men wearing military uniforms, driven out of
the city and beaten with sticks and hosepipe before being released a few hours
later.




For further information:

For further information: Katherine Borlongan, Directrice générale,
Reporters Without Borders Canada, (514) 521 4111, rsfcanada@rsf.org,
www.rsfcanada.org

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