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Afghan Media Faces Challenges: Watchdogs

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KABUL: Many media watchdogs expressed concerns over the situation of the media in Afghanistan, saying that the Afghan media community is scrambling with various types of challenges.

The watchdogs meanwhile urged the Islamic Emirate and the UN to support Afghan journalists and media outlets.

At least 186b media organizations have halted their operations within the past seven months, the National House of Afghanistan’s Journalists said.

Sayed Yasin Matin, head of the group, said the media outlets are closed due to economic problems and because many professional journalists have left the country.

 “We have suggested that they should help the media outlets until they stand on their own feet, no matter if it takes one year or two,” said Hafizullah Barakzai, an official of the federation.

Three media-supporting organizations in a joint statement called on the UN to pay special attention to protect journalists in Afghanistan. The Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Media Organization, Afghan Journalists Safety Committee, and International Media Support urged the UN Security Council to take action to lower violence against reporters.

The media watchdogs called on the current Afghan government to provide the Afghan media workers with security.

“Based on the law, security of reporters and media is a duty of the government. The Islamic Emirate has said the media law remains valid and it should act accordingly,” the statement reads.

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