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Editorial: Media is enemy to nobody

On Monday, Taliban called on the Afghan media organizations to stop what they consider “anti-jihad and anti-Taliban sentiments”. The threat includes radios, televisions and other media such as newspapers, news agencies and online outlets. They said that if the media ignored their announcement and did not stop publishing anti-Taliban advertisements within one week, they would be treated as military targets and media workers and offices would have no safety. This is not the first time that media outlets and journalists are threatened, not only by Taliban, but by different who hold and use guns. Journalist as his/her name explains is a person with pen and paper as his/her weapon and informing people about what happens is his/her job. Journalist is the very helpless class in society and is threatened, beaten, kidnapped, imprisoned, killed and injured by different powerful people just for saying and reporting the truth. In spring of 2016, a mini-bus carrying personnel of a private media organization, came under a car bomb attack, in which a number of them were killed, while others wounded. Taliban who claimed responsibility for the attack, had threatened the media company prior to the incident. A number of reporters were killed and injured last year by a suicide bomber in Kabul while covering another attack. These incidents are just an example of tens of attacks against reporters and media companies. And 2019 was also so far deadly for Afghan media workers. Journalists in other nations are respected and considered as the people who work hard in difficult situations to report about events in the human being society. In Afghanistan, it is different and journalists lack safety and security. The government as the main body responsible for general security has been unfortunately remaining inactive and just a watcher to attempts against reporters. Taliban say they oppose the media because they are “used as intelligence tools” by the government and are “spying”. This is not true, they know well about the job of journalists and what are Afghan journalists are doing. Journalists call Taliban spokesmen for information, the group’s spokesmen send e-mails to the media and are usually in contacts with them. If the journalists are intelligence tools in hands of their enemies, why do they make contacts with them? Taliban need to realize that journalists are enemies to nobody. The world heard that Taliban took power in 1995 and formed their government through media. So, the Taliban should stop scaring and threatening journalists, their families and the people of Afghanistan by such unfriendly messages.

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