List of slain reporters in Somalia grows to 16

By Abdi Guled and Jason Straziuso

Associated Press

Published: Wednesday, Oct. 24 2012 9:33 p.m. MDT

FILE - In this Friday, Sept. 21, 2012 file photo, friends and relatives attend the funeral of Abdisatar Daher Sabriye, a well known journalist with state-run television who died in a Thursday, Sept. 20, 2012 suicide bomb attack, during his funeral in Mogadishu, Somalia. The death of Somali television reporter Ahmed Saakin Farah on Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2012 brought the number of Somali journalists killed this year to 16, most in targeted attacks by gunmen who know there is little chance they will be caught or jailed, making Somalia the No. 2 country in the world, behind only Iraq, for unsolved journalist killings in recent years, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. (AP Photo/Mohamed Sheikh Nor, File)

Associated Press

MOGADISHU, Somalia — The list of murdered Somali journalists keeps growing longer, and no one seems able to stop it.

The death of Ahmed Saakin Farah brought the number to 16 Somali journalists killed this year, most in targeted attacks by gunmen who know there is little chance they will be caught or jailed.

Assailants shot Farah, a 25-year- old reporter for the London-based Universal TV, three times in the head about 9 p.m. Tuesday in the northern region of Somaliland.

"It's a shocking murder, and part of the anti-media campaign," Abdullahi Ahmed Nor, a fellow journalist, said Wednesday. "It was a big loss for us, his friends and family."

Somalia has been one of the most dangerous places to operate as a journalist this year. The irony for journalists is that Mogadishu, on the whole, is far safer than it was when the Islamist extremists, al-Shabab, controlled most of the city from 2007-2011. African Union troops forced al-Shabab out in August 2011, leading to less violence and a general revival of business, the arts and sports.

Most of the killings have taken place in Mogadishu, but the latest murder was in Somaliland, possibly a sign the scourge of media deaths is spreading.

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