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السبت، 31 ديسمبر 2016

Iraq – Freedom of the press – Kidnapping of journalist Afrah Shawqi (December 27, 2016)

Iraq – Freedom of the press – Kidnapping of journalist Afrah Shawqi (December 27, 2016)

The Common Ills
From France Diplomatie:
France was shocked and concerned to learn of the kidnapping of the journalist Afrah Shawqi on December 27 in Baghdad.

We assure the Iraqi authorities of our support for the investigation demanded by Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, and express our hope that Ms. Shawqi will be released in the very near future.

France applauds the courage of Ms. Shawqi, who has notably worked to defend women’s rights and is renowned and appreciated in Iraq and beyond. She has also been active in exposing atrocities committed by armed groups.

We reiterate our commitment to the freedom of the press and freedom of expression throughout the world. Iraqi journalists have paid a heavy toll in the defense of that freedom, as noted in the report published today by the Iraqi professional group: 455 journalists have been killed since 2003, including 20 in 2016 alone.

The US State Dept?
Silent on the kidnapping.
Not that they aren't working.
They issued a statement that amounted to no more than a war of words.  With?  Theresa May.
But they've ignored Afrah.
She's not being ignored elsewhere. 
Poet Dunya Mikhail on Kidnapped Iraqi Writer Afrah Shawqi and Elusive 'Freedom of Expression' via

Iraqi Sunnis civilians
Protesting against the abduction  of Iraqi Sunni Journalist  Afrah Shawqi
by Shia militias backed by Iran

Journalist Afrah Shawqi al-Qaisi has been kidnapped from her Baghdad home. She was taken by armed men posing as security forces. Iraq

Shia militias kidnapped the journalist Afrah Shawqi

Iraq gunmen kidnap Afrah Shawqi al-Qaisi, journalist who condemned impunity of armed groups

  1. I wish that oil had NEVER been discovered in the Middle East. (Free Afrah Shawqi al-Qaisi)

adalberto Gunmen have kidnapped an outspoken Iraqi journalist, Afrah Shawqi al-Qaisi, after storming her home in the Iraqi capital of Baghd…

Afrah's life matters. 
The failure of the Iraqi police to find her would be yet another indictment of the Iraqi government.

Prime Minister Hayder al-Abadi should be allocating resources on this.  They have descriptions, it should not be at all hard to track the kidnappers down.

But no such effort appears to be taking place.

And while foreign reporters -- Jill Carroll, for example -- were released or found alive long after they were kidnapped, Iraqi reporters tend to be killed shortly after they're kidnapped. 
This is a very time sensitive issue.
Hayder's inability or refusal to deploy necessary resources to finding Afrah would be a strong indictment of his government.

The following community sites -- plus Jody Watley -- updated:

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