KABUL: The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) said that more than 318 media organizations have been shut since the fall of the Western-backed government in 33 of 34 provinces in Afghanistan.
The IFJ in a recent report expressed concerns over the condition of the Afghan media family, saying “the crisis has hit newspapers the hardest with just 20 out of 114 continuing to publish,” the report read. “51 TV stations, 132 radio stations and 49 online media outlets have ceased operations according to the report compiled for the IFJ.”
Only 2,334 journalists are still employed “from a pre-Taliban high of 5069,” according to the IFJ.
72 percent of journalists who lost their jobs are women, the report said. “243 women are still employed by the media.”
“From threats to draconian reporting restrictions and from economic collapse to the withdrawal of development funding the picture is catastrophic, not just for journalists who have lost their jobs or been forced to flee but also for citizens who are being denied access to information,” IFJ General Secretary Anthony Bellanger said.
The Afghan media community called on the Islamic Emirate to remain supportive of the Afghan media.
“If the immediate steps are not paid towards the media in the country, only a certain number of media organizations will be active in Afghanistan in the near future,” said Hujatullah Mujadidi, head of the Afghan Independent Journalists Association.
Some journalists urged the international community to address the existing problems in the Afghan media.
“If the restrictions imposed on media remain in force, the media organizations will stop operating and will collapse,” said Samiullah Pam, a journalist.
This comes as the Islamic Emirate announced earlier that the Media Violation Commission and a Joint Commission of media and the government would be established soon.