Another journalist shot dead in N Waziristan
PESHAWAR: Tribal journalist Malik Mumtaz Khan was shot dead in North Waziristan’s Miranshah town on Wednesday, Tribal Union of Journalists (TUJ) said.
Mumtaz Khan was working for a private news channel and had 15-year journalistic experience. He is the fourth journalist to be killed this year and the second to be killed in North Waziristan since Hayatullah Khan was found dead in June 2006. “He was fired on by gunmen near Miranshah town,” the TUJ said. No group has claimed responsibility for the murder of the senior tribal journalist. North Waziristan is infested with militancy and local journalists find it extremely difficult to work independently.
“Gunmen opened fire on his vehicle when he was driving back to his home and he died on the spot,” a local intelligence official told AFP, requesting anonymity. A spokesman for Pakistani Taliban condemned the killing and denied any involvement by the umbrella Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) faction. “He was a good reporter and was serving tribal people, we condemn his killing and salute his services for tribal people,” TTP spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan told AFP by telephone from an undisclosed location. Mumtaz is survived by his wife, two sons and one daughter.
The gunmen were waiting in a vehicle with black tinted glasses, mainly used by militant groups, said tribal journalists. “We are saddened by the loss of Mumtaz Khan,” TUJ President Nasir Mohmand told Daily Times. He said Mumtaz Khan was the 13th tribal journalist TUJ lost and called upon the government to “ensure protection to the tribal journalists”. Some tribal journalists said Mumtaz Khan was under threat for some time. staff report