Iraq - Two journalists killed, two more kidnapped in Baghdad

    MONTREAL, March 20 /CNW Telbec/ - Reporters Without Borders today learned
of the death of two Iraqi journalists at the hands of armed groups in Baghdad,
bringing to 155 the number of media staff killed in Iraq since the start of
the conflict in March 2003.
    The worldwide press freedom organisation on 16 March held a protest in
Paris in which 153 activists and volunteers held up photos of 153 leading
French journalists behind a banner reading, "And what if it was in France?" to
raise public awareness of the full horror of the attacks on the press in Iraq.
    Less than one week later the death toll has mounted still further.
    The body of Hamid al-Duleimi, 37, a producer on the TV channel al-Nahrain
(the two river banks) was found dead yesterday in the Baghdad morgue. He had
been abducted two days previously as he left the channel's studios. Autopsy
reports revealed that the journalist had been tortured. Two other employees of
the channel were killed in May 2006 after being stopped at a fake military
road block in the Iraqi capital.
    The editor of the daily al-Safir, Hussein al Jaburi, 63, died from his
injuries in a hospital in Amman, Jordan on 16 March where he was taken for
treatment after being ambushed outside his Baghdad home on 11 February.
    Elsewhere, there is still no news of Karim Manhal, 48, a commentator on
Radio Dijla, who was snatched from his car by four armed and masked men
outside the radio's studios with his driver, Thamir Sabri, There has been no
claim of responsibility for the kidnapping.
    "We salute the determination and courage of the scores of journalists who
continue to do their jobs despite these attacks, kidnappings and ambushes
targeting the press on a daily basis," Reporters Without Borders said.
    "The Iraqi authorities must urgently set up security and legal structures
to combat the impunity which means that these attacks continue."

    Reporters Without Borders defends imprisoned journalists and press
freedom throughout the world. It has nine national sections (Austria, Belgium,
Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland). It has
representatives in Bangkok, London, New York, Tokyo and Washington. And it has
more than 120 correspondents worldwide.

For further information:

For further information: Emily Jacquard, Canadian office representative,
Reporters Without Borders, (514) 521-4111, Cell: (514) 258-4208, Fax: (514)

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